Does anyone really believe Jordan was banned for gambling?

I missed the Jordan special on ESPN this evening, remembered it just in time to flip and see the closing credits.   However, one of the things I find interesting about it is that the author made it sound like it was common knowledge that Jordan was banned for gambling, but after further review, he found that to be false.

They brought it up on the afternoon saloon when interviewing the producer of the Jordan special with Jurko saying "he always believed this".   Even hearing Jurko, it sounded like he was talking out his ass just to try and bring up the topic and didn't really believe it.

I mean really?   Did this honestly take further review?

Guys like Ruben Patterson have raped people without being suspended and have had it covered up with the help of their teams, but the league was going to decide to ban Jordan due to gambling while he was probably generating a 500 million a year for the league?   Please.  

The NBA knew exactly how much money Jordan brought in for the league.   When he was out, there was talk about the whole league getting together and offering him a league salary on top of his Bulls salary to entice him to come back.

The NBA wasn't going to ban Jordan, the very idea is simply preposterous, especially given the things they've covered up in the past.   It surprises me that this theory was given so much credibility over the years, especially given that Jordan had talked about winning and retiring well before retiring, before his dad died and felt betrayed by the media.  

I just can't believe that anyone ever seriously gave this thought any credibility whatsoever, but maybe I'm the crazy one.

Sorry, just had to get that off my chest.


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  • VINTAGE MJ MOMENT (w/ the White Sox):

    No...he wasn't banned from the NBA. Like S. Smith said, "Stern was begging him to stay."

  • I think it got a lot of legs from Bill Simmons repeating it many times. Of course I think Bill is playing it up for comedic value and doesn't really believe it, but the nature of his column is that he mixes comedy with serious analysis so I can see how some people take it seriously.

  • Wasn't Jordan 'best friends' with his Dad who traveled with the Bulls on road trips? I always thought Jordan was getting a bit burned out and then when his Dad was murdered it was just too much for him and he had to get away.

    That's always been my impression...

  • No.

    This is just one of those conversation comments that makes things interesting. You sit around with your buddies talking sports and when you've talked all the daily sports lines to death, someone brings up something like this and we all know where it goes from there ...

    It's impossible that anyone can believe that.

    To think that everyone involved with such a decision would have been able to keep it completely hidden is pretty near impossible.
    To believe that the NBA would have ever handed down such a decision for that kind of "transgression" is also near impossible.

  • What does that say about Michael, (warning - major tangent/sidetrack) now everybody especially the media(and I'm not referring to you/ragging on you here Doug) refers to him as Jordan which I guess makes sense with the passage of time as calling Muhammed Ali "Ali" or Babe Ruth "Ruth", but still to me he'll always be Michael as Scottie Pippen will be Scottie blah blah, I know, I know overly loyal fan in a cynical as hell media age.

    Anyhow, what does that say about a guy who's dad is his best friend, and upstanding parent as is his mother by all accounts, isn't that generally a good thing? So you're the biggest star on the planet, and your salt of the earth father decides to take a short rest on the shoulder of a highway(although wasn't it a notorious stretch of Interstate 95?) still dear trusting dad slumbers only to be gunned down in cold blodded murder/carjacking.

    And what was his dad's dream? Baseball. Either for himself or more likely Michael to star in the game he loved. So what does the mega basketball star of the universe do? Put away the b-ball for much scorn and ridicule which did occur to follow he and his dad's dream.

    You know the more I think of the smug ass Chicago media, and Doug as god is my witness I'm not referring to you here, but I see before Scottie's HOF speech/Induction Comcast's Gayle Fisher smugly referring to Scottie being a team favorite unlike Michael who the players couldn't stand.

    You know what? F-ck Gayle Fisher and f-ck the Chicago media. F-ck em' all to hell. Steve Kerr loves Michael. Pax loves Mike. Toni plays hilarious I'm sure jackpot pick-up golf games with MJ. Scottie does indeed hold his partner in basketball immortality in reverence. Phil says, "No two No.1 and No.2's ever liked each other more or treated each other more kindly then Michael and Scottie."

    Michael banned for gambling? ON what his team the Chicago Bulls? I will believe Mike ever bet on a spread or his team to lose on a cold day in hell. Great men from all fields did often turn into a-holes after there reign because they just couldn't handle no longer being "the man." Look at Teddy Roosevelt. I'm no Repub, but you are talking about one great, heroic American who sacrificed what could have been his his life for his country, and stamped out the megamonopolies that nearly ruined this country. Yet, after leaving office he turned into somewhat of an irrational, pompous, carping dickhead.

    Yeah, Michael nearly broke Scottie in practice one time. He threw punches at Wil Purdue. He grew cold in his relationship with Phil. he unfairly treated Toni like Circus elephant crap for a long time.

    But getting the living shit beat out of him by Dennis Rodman, who he forgave I think if he was to play so seamlessly with him(I could be wrong there), and the Pistons and having the league stand by and watch, and then yes berating his teammates like the somehwat pussies they were(being). Did that not help them climb the mountain? Would they have climbed that mountain, and as soon as they did without that expecting more, demanding more form michael? Did he not give them what they wanted, to become champions?

    I am sick of this revisionist history, smug media bullshit. And franky, excluding Doug because he is sincere and has shwon he's a dem(small d)/one of us, this hero today, gone tomorrow with sneering write offs rumor mill ratings media whores can kiss my ass.

    Michael banned for what? gambling on a spread or Bulls to lose? Whoever spreads such lies I piss on you grave. And your mothers too.

    Fortunately no one thank god believes this sh*t. Twenty, thirty years from now with his negativity for the sake of ratings media revisionist bullsh*t? Who knows. Hopefully, if ever Michael won't be disparaged any further until after I'm dead. Mean time, Michael, I understand your horribly misguided tantrum because you were corruptly allowed to be raped by Rodman/the Pistons(really the referees and Stern) because one man could not beat a clearly superior team. And Riley's Knicks cheapshot thugball made for great ratings, and so it was allowed. So yes I understand your tantrum Mike. But mishandled.

    It's OK. Real thinkers no you're no villain. You are a hero. As was Ali, Ruth, and hopefully will be remembered as such if America can climb out of this phony negative distorted media ratings/greed glut this country has fallen into in general. Did I mention the media, not Doug, can fu*k off.

  • I think an associated question would be: Do you think MJ ever threw a game or shaved points? I cannot in the wildest dark spots of my imagination think the he ever did, and thus I couldn't care less about his gambling. The league had to feel the same way. You don't want a player gambling or getting caught up with those who may influence his game. I think the comparisons to Ali and Ruth are right on point in that we could never suspect either of those two of throwing a fight/game. Ruth was a notorious partier, and had some interesting connections--in fact, the big names of organized crime wanted to rub shoulders with the Babe. But do we think of the Babe as throwing games? Nah. Same for MJ. So, if there was no threat to the integrity of the game because Michael gambled, why would the league care? PR? Michael was the perfect PR machine!

  • In reply to coachskiles:

    That's the preposterous part, that MJ might actually not try to win. I don't think it is preposterous to think the league might have had an undisclosed suspension. This was just a few years after Pete Rose had been banned from baseball for gambling and the college point shaving scandals. So it's not a preposterous idea given that. It's also just not possible for a guy as driven as Jordan to do something like that, especially given how much money he already had and the apparent financial savvy that he has. How many ex-players set themselves up to eventually be owners?

    This is just another story line for guys with a deadline who have to write something other than "MJ is the GOAT" every day.

  • In reply to coachskiles:

    I hadn't even heard of that theory until a few days ago.

  • In reply to coachskiles:

    i don't believe in this banned thing.

    my theory has always been maybe he got into a gambling debt with the wrong people and that cost him his Dad's life. if anything, thats why i think he retired. and not some gambling debt associated with basketball i don't think. i don't believe it has anything to do with point shaving or playing spreads, though it could make sense. but ultimately, i believe a gambling debt that led to his father's murder is what made him walk away.

  • In reply to wukrza:

    I believe that Wade told you this and maybe he also told that Riley was involved in the gambling rumors so that MJ would be out of the league and his team could just stop crying after every playoffs..

  • In reply to wukrza:

    Another thing this is a guy who absolutely loved playing basketball who retired the first time at the peak of his career. Goes and plays baseball. Only to come back to the Bulls and then come back again with the Wizards. Jordan lived basketball. Who takes a two hiatus in the middle of what could possibly be the best basketball career ever? Funny thing is even with the 2 year vacation his legacy is hardly bothered by it at all and if anything was enhanced.

  • In reply to wukrza:

    I think that Jordan was most certainly suspended for betting on his own games. I heard this theory first in 1998 in NY my high school basketball coach brought in a scout from the Phoenix Suns and he told me in a private convo the suspension theory.

    I thought he was crazy at first, but after thinking about it and seeing the facts in his Father's murder it made more and more sense. Really? A carjacking and they dumped the body in a swamp. Most carjackings/killings the body is left on the side of the road, why would they move him? It was a contract killing because MJ didn't do what he was supposed to. I remember watching close games in the 4th quarter when Jordan acted really weird, and would disappear and then turn it on all at once.

    If he is so driven then why would he quit to play baseball when he knew he could go for Russel type numbers?

    All I know is that Jordan ABSOLUTELY could control the SCORE of a game and his retiring for 1 year and a half was so strange their has to be a better explination.

    On the other hand why would the NBA have him come back with 17 games left? I think that was strange also. But if he was doing it by himself, why would he come back at that time also?

    It's just all to weird for me there is definately another reason than Jordan just had too much or was burned out, or that he wanted to play baseball, his first love. NO WAY!

  • Two things. Why did Jordan's father get killed in such a manner? Why not Larry Bird's, John Stockton's, or Jerry Krause's? Why not David Stern's son or somebody? Why Jordan? The best player ever. Then why did it happen at a time when the media had turned on Jordan? What ever became of any of the gambling issues that were raised by the media anyways?
    My other opinion and I could be wrong. But for me when the Bulls ran the triangle they were nearly unbeatable. Things clicked too well. Teams never could find an answer to the triangle with Jordan and Pippen plugged in and running it the way it's supposed to be ran. But it seemed, and maybe I'm wrong, when the Bulls as a team went away from the triangle and ran the offense thru Mike solely. They struggled. And whatever team they were playing against was able to get back into the game. And then when things seemed dire and it looked as the Bulls would lose. They would go back to the triangle offense and put teams away. I always felt that Jordan never threw games for Vegas but I have suspicions that he did affect games to cover spreads. Why? Because him being the single greatest player able to play the game and with almost every game the Bulls played ultimately depending on his play only Jordan had the power to affect the Bulls final score in such a way to guarantee that certain parties could profit from betting on the Bulls.

  • In reply to logikal77:

    Did you wear your tinfoil hat as you posted that?

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