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Quote from Driven from Within

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Quote from Driven from Within

It is so easy to read something that you really don't understand and just put it down or turn the page to something that makes more sense. But, it is such literature that is taken for granted being as it usually contains the components that really mean something. These hidden morals, definitions, and interpretations lay everywhere; from poems to short stories and musical lyrics to quotes. These pieces of writing are read and heard by millions every day and while some actually see eye to eye on the content, many find themselves confused as to what picture the writing is attempting to illustrate.

“I had just come off a very difficult year. I had to fight the Bulls just to get back on the floor after I broke my foot. You could say I was getting my business education. I have I never been afraid to asset myself on or off the court. And I wasn’t afraid of change.” This is a quote by Michael Jordan from his book, Driven from Within, and while I thought I knew what the piece was saying, I found myself reading it for a second, and then a third time before realizing I didn't have much of a clue what was going on.

The first question that arose from the piece was what “Bulls” is he referring to fighting. While many may automatically think he was simply talking about the competition amongst himself and his teammates, (Chicago Bulls), other interpretations could be made. One may think of the stanza metaphorically, similar to taking the bull by his horns, but instead he could be fighting bulls as in reference to a struggle or large effort exerted in order to get something out of what you put in. It could also mean Michael’s conflict with the Chicago Bulls administration and troubles with a contract or some other office management decisions.

Michael “Air” Jordan could possibly be known just as well for his Jordan brand shoes and apparel, as his actual playing of the game of basketball. That is why some may question what it means to be “…getting my business education.” The question can be answered simply if you knew how much of his personal involvement was included in the start of his business. While he was recovering from his foot injury, he and Nike executives met, and with much of Michael’s intervention they created his first shoe under the Jordan named. The shoe was made famous by replacing the Nike swoosh with an inspired Jumpman logo. The process of designing the shoe and contract terms really tested M.J.’s business skills, but he learned quickly and that is very evident today.

Michael Jordan made a name for himself with highlight reel dunks, numerous buzzer beaters, smothering defense, and it were these attributes that displayed his character and his ability to never get scared or phased one bit by the challenges that faced him. This raised the question, “What change occurred that he was not afraid of?” The fact is, no change occurred but there was a possibility that he may switch brands of shoes and he could possibly be playing for another team. While many people aren’t open to change, Michael looked at the positives and saw change as an opportunity.

I was certain this quote was about his actual basketball career, but through research and dissecting he was really talking about was basketball off the court. Mr. Jordan has many other acclaimed quotes, many of which define him solely on being a basketball player, but this one defines him as a basketball businessman. So, as this is my interpretation, others may depict it differently, having other questions or ideas of what some things mean. But, never be afraid to dig deep to understand what something is saying.





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