have we never observed Michael Jordan like this, or is it just that we overlooked? Any individual who survived the Chicago Bulls’ mastery of the NBA during the 1990s – even, similar to me, as a child – can presumably still review the wide layouts of Jordan’s ability, the characteristics that made him such a remarkable competitor: the versatility; the hang time; the terrific dunks, preposterous switch-hands layups, and grip bell mixers; the crude force. Jordan ruled at “the finish of history”, in that inquisitive decade between the fall of the Berlin Divider and 9/11, and for all his capacity with a ball in his grasp he’s constantly appeared to be somewhat remote, a little above everything. He was the ideal competitor, it might be said, for the decade that liked itself post-political. In a time that idea it had made sense of everything, Jordan was the player who really had.
Michael Jordan won six NBA titles with the Chicago Bulls. Photograph: Nathaniel S Butler/NBAE via Getty Images