Chapter 8: 1984 NBA draft
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After a national championship in 1982 and 2 more years at UNC, Jordan joined the NBA draft one year before his graduation. The Huston rockets had the first pick and chose the future hall of famer Hakeem “the dream” Olajuwon. The Portland Trailblazers used their second pick on Sam Bowie, the 7’1″ center from Kentucky. Finally the Chicago Bulls, with the third pick in the draft, selected Michael Jordan, who was preparing for the Olympics at the time of the draft.
Many people consider Portland’s drafting of Bowie over Jordan to be one of the worst draft decisions ever. The Blazer’s pick only made sense considering they had picked Clyde Drexler the previous year, who plays the same position as Jordan, and who would also go on to become a star. However, Bowie was injury prone and would have a journeyman career in the NBA. Michael did not mind being drafted 3rd, knowing that Bowie fit in better with the Portland system.
Here’s the clip of him being drafted.
This might be the best draft pick ever in the history of sports.
Coming out of UNC under Dean Smith’s system, Michael did not expect to make an immediate impact with the Bulls. In an early interview, Jordan remarked “This is not going to be the Michael Jordan show,” he said repeatedly. “I’m just another rookie and my job is to fit in as a part of the Bulls.” Little did he know that he would go on to BECOME the Bulls.