What would be a fitting 50th birthday present for Michael Jordan, the greatest of all time? Giving him his 50th Sports Illustrated cover sounds about right.
Sorry to ruin the surprise, but I am horrible at these things, and this was just too perfect. With a Jordan-adoring public and a legend who continues to be the measure of the very best players in the NBA, let's call it fate.
Here is the tweet from Sports Illustrated, who will pay homage to the G.O.A.T. on his special day:
Sports Illustrated @SInow
Your Cover This Week: Happy 50th Birthday Michael Jordan! http://t.co/VApM6ntL // http://t.co/Wd4lqKXm2/13/2013, 2:20:44 PM
The Chicago Bulls legend is turning 50 on February 17, which means that it's about that time for the world goes crazy over No. 23.
LeBron James @KingJames
I'm not MJ, I'm LJ2/13/2013, 12:08:21 PM
One famed rival had to chime in on the red-hot LeBron-Jordan debate with this tweet:
Earvin Magic Johnson @MagicJohnson
If MJ and LeBron played 1-on-1 10 times, MJ would win all 10. MJ is the ultimate 1-on-1 player! #MJvsLeBron2/13/2013, 12:15:38 AM
If Kobe Bryant's career is any guide, the Jordan comparisons will continue for King James until he hangs up the sneakers. And with the way he is playing right now, they are well warranted.
However, this isn't about the new Jordan—it's about the old one. The guy who is hitting the half century mark is mandated that Sports Illustrated splash his image on their covers 49 times during his playing days.
Consider his other amazing accolades all you want, but that one is a fairly good indicator to the influence he had on the game.
And the influence he continues to have, as his most recent cover proves.