Michael Jordan finally responded Monday to LaVar Ball’s outrageous boast earlier this year in USA Today that Back in my heyday, I would kill Michael Jordan one-on-one.
Answering questions at his Michael Jordan Flight School in Santa Barbara, Calif., Jordan not only addressed Ball’s comments but also put the man in his place succinctly.
It doesn’t deserve a response, but I’ma give it to you because you asked the question, Jordan said. I don’t think he could beat me if I was one-legged.
A little context: LaVar Ball played one season at Washington State, averaging 2.2 points and 2.3 rebounds per game. Michael Jordan played 13 seasons in the NBA and averaged 30.1 points, 6.2 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game.
No one in his right mind thinks Ball could beat MJ one-on-one, including, now we know, MJ himself.
All of this, of course, comes with an obvious caveat: Griffin’s health. He has suffered a number of injuries over the last three seasons that have limited him to playing 163 out of a possible 246 regular season games. Seeing as most of those have been lower body injuries, it raises concerns about how prepared he is to put the Clippers on his back and carry them to the playoffs in what will be a loaded Western Conference. Griffin might not even be healthy to start next season (though he has said he expects to be ready for training camp), which wouldn’t be the most promising of starts to the post-Paul era in Los Angeles.
Nevertheless, if we’re operating under the assumption that Griffin can stay healthy, there’s no reason why the Clippers can’t continue to be one of the top offensive teams in the NBA with him at the helm. Griffin has shown he is capable of being both a scorer and a facilitator in the past, and the Clippers are built to play to his strengths.
At the very least, they owe it to themselves to see how far Griffin can take them as the No. 1 option as he enters his prime.