Michael Jordan’s most famous moment in collective bargaining came when, as a Bulls player in 1998, he told Wizards owner Abe Pollin to sell his team if he couldn’t turn a profit.
NBA commissioner Adam Silver, via Ohm Youngmisuk of ESPN:
“Let me just single out one owner in particular, Michael Jordan,” Silver said during his upbeat update on CBA negotiations this week following the Board of Governors meetings in Manhattan.
“I think having Michael Jordan as part of our negotiating committee, the unique perspective he brings to the bargaining table because of his playing career, having been, of course, a superstar player. Now for players to see him in that position, it doesn’t mean that if Michael says it, it necessarily means that they accept that as the position they should take. But I think that’s really added a special element unique to this league.”
I don’t know to what degree Silver is just crediting the biggest-name owner vs. someone truly influential.
But if this is the formula that achieves historic labor peace, I don’t care.
Let’s hope Jordan takes the exact same role and gets the owners and players to compromise just as quickly next time, too.