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Dennis Rodman: LeBron James would be an ‘average’ player 20 years ago

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When comparing some of the greatest players the NBA has ever seen like Michael Jordan and LeBron James, the issue of the game’s evolution always comes into play. Can you ever truly compare two players who played in different eras? On some levels, you can. But for the most part, it’s impossible.

For example, Dennis Rodman told Dan Patrick on Friday that the NBA has changed so much over the 20-25 years that LeBron would be nothing more than “average” if he played during Rodman’s era. Because of that, he said you can’t even compare Jordan and James.

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Michael Jordan to Dez Bryant: ‘Stay out of trouble’

dez-bryantDallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant recently took a major step toward cementing his financial future when he signed an endorsement deal with the Jordan Brand, as in Michael Jordan. Bryant is obviously a risk for Jordan’s company because of his checkered past, which includes but is not limited to assaulting his own mother and causing a scene at the mall with his pants.

However, Dez also has the potential to be a superstar in the making and a major marketing tool. That’s why His Airness wants the 24-year-old to keep his head on straight.

“The only thing he told me was ‘stay out of trouble’”, Bryant said of the first time he met Jordan, via the Star-Telegram. “Hearing it from him, he is a strong voice. His opinion matters. It just adds fuel to trying to do things great at all times, that’s something you don’t want to mess up. Now, I do pay attention to that, just because of the fact of who he is and what he is about. Everybody knows Michael Jordan is about his business, so that makes you want to be about yours.”

For the most part, Bryant has kept his nose clean since the Cowboys gave him a strict set of rules to abide by last season. If he respects Jordan as much as he says he does, signing a contract with the Jordan Brand should only help motivate him to stay on track.

“I don’t know one guy who doesn’t admire him,” Bryant said. “It’s very rare to be a part of that group (a Jordan Brand athlete endorser). Just to be blessed to be part of that group means a lot to me. Before I was even signed to the brand all I rocked were Jordans. I’m blessed to be part of that. I’m going to stay focused and do my job and hold myself accountable with my actions.”

Bryant caught 92 passes for 1,382 yards and 12 touchdowns last season, so we know what he is capable of on the field. If his new deal with the Jordan Brand inspires him to keep a low profile off the field, Tony Romo could be getting an even better Bryant in 2013.

Phil Jackson would start team with Bill Russell over Michael Jordan

Bill RussellPhil Jackson has coached two of the greatest basketball players ever, yet he wouldn’t choose either one of them first if he were starting a team.

During an interview with Time, the former Los Angeles Lakers and Chicago Bulls coach said he would take Bill Russell first if he were starting a team, not Michael Jordan or Kobe Bryant.

“In my estimation, the guy that has to be there would be Bill Russell,” Jackson answered when asked, via SI’s The Point Forward. “He’s won 11 championships as a player. That’s really the idea of what excellence is, when you win championships.”

Time’s Belinda Luscombe followed up that question by asking Jackson whom he would choose between MJ and Kobe. Though excerpts from his new book “Eleven Rings: The Soul of Success” make it seem like he leans towards Jordan, Jackson mostly avoided answering the question.

“I would flip a coin,” Jackson said. “Whichever one came up heads or tails, I’d take that person. They were that good.”

Jackson caused a stir when the book excerpts made it seem like he was picking MJ over Kobe in the historical debate. Bryant seemed to take issue with Jackson’s commentary and tweeted out a response:

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Phil Jackson leans to Michael Jordan over Kobe Bryant

Kobe Bryant Michael JordanLooks like Phil Jackson won’t be back to coach the Los Angeles Lakers any time too soon.

In his new memoir “Eleven Rings: The Soul of Success” that will be out next Tuesday, Jackson finally compares Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant as players. Jackson clearly favors MJ over Kobe.

Jackson has won 11 championship rings as a coach — six with the Chicago Bulls and five with the Lakers. He mostly avoided comparing MJ and Kobe — two of the greatest players ever, both of whom were star players on his teams — until now. That’s probably because he was still in the middle of his coaching career when he wrote his first book.

According to excerpts from the book shared by the Los Angeles Times, Jackson calls Jordan a “tougher, more intimidating defender,” and says Kobe sometimes forces the action. He also said Jordan had superior skills to Kobe as a leader.

“No question, Michael was a tougher, more intimidating defender. He could break through virtually any screen and shut down almost any player with his intense, laser-focused style of defense,” Jackson writes, per The Times.

“Kobe has learned a lot from studying Michael’s tricks, and we often used him as our secret weapon on defense when we needed to turn the direction of a game. In general, Kobe tends to rely more heavily on his flexibility and craftiness, but he takes a lot of gambles on defense and sometimes pays the price.”

[RELATED: Which player would Jackson choose to start a team?]

Jackson also commented on Kobe’s 81-point game against the Toronto Raptors and noted the difference in shooting percentage between the two; Kobe is 45.4 percent for his career, whereas Jordan was 49.7.

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Michael Jordan forced Bow Wow to get rid of his Reebok shoes

michael-jordanMichael Jordan is one of the best businessmen in the basketball shoe and apparel game. That’s partly because of how passionate he is about his brand.

During a recent interview with Montreality, rapper Bow Wow elaborated on that passion.

Bow Wow was asked to share a Michael Jordan story, and he recalled the time he wore some Reebok Allen Iverson shoes to Jordan’s house.

“I’m actually real cool with his sons, Marcus and Jeffrey…I would say, we kinda grew up together,” said Bow Wow, via Ball Overall. “Being on tour, every time we came to Chicago, even at the age of like 15, they would come around and we just clicked.

“There’d be times I stayed over at the family, ya know, Mr. Jordan’s house…actually a funny story, I actually wore some Iversons to their house…and Michael Jordan woke us all up and was like ‘Whose is these?’…and I was like ‘they’re mine’…and I never saw My A.I.’s after that moment. I was in some Jordan’s going down to play some basketball.”

Classic MJ. Based on his competitive drive on the court, is there any surprise the legend is that strict about enforcing a shoe code in his home? Heck no. The only shocker is that he allows himself to go out in public looking like this.

You can watch Bow Wow tell the story in the video below:

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Michael Jordan once lost to Charlie and Martin Sheen in basketball

Michael Jordan, the legend who won six NBA championships and five NBA MVPs, once lost to a couple of actors in basketball. True story.

MJ took on Charlie and Martin Sheen in a 1986 game show called “War of the Stars” hosted by Dick Van Patten. Before you get all crazy here about MJ losing, keep in mind that the games were handicapped in favor of the Sheens.

The two sides competed in three competitions with the following rules:

    - Foul shooting: Each side got 20 foul shots, but MJ had to shoot with his eyes closed
    - Horse
    - Two on one: Game went to 10. Jordan had to spot the Sheens five points and only got one shot at the basket.

The whole thing was pretty awesome to watch. You had both Sheens in short shorts and high top shoes, while Jordan was as skinny as he’s been in 30 years. And even Van Patten was on point with his lines.

“The young girls here really like Charlie,” Van Patten said at one point.

As for the results, MJ went 11 of 20 on free throws with his eyes closed. Charlie went 8-10 on his foul shots, and then Martin made four to give the Sheens the win.

Horse, as you could imagine, was no competition. MJ just dominated with his fancy layups and deep outside shots. But the two on one was a different story. Charlie nailed his outside shots and gave the Sheens a 10-5 win.

We already knew that Charlie was a good athlete — he can play baseball and admitted to taking steroids for “Major League” — but who knew he also could stroke an outside jumper? Impressive.

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Michael Jordan wedding pictures plus Scottie Pippen, Toni Kukoc on guest list

Michael Jordan wedding tent

Michael Jordan Yvette PrietoMichael Jordan took the walk down the aisle for the second time in his life. Yes, his Airness married model Yvette Prieto Saturday in a super private, super exclusive wedding in Palm Beach.

Earlier Saturday, we told you the wedding was expected to have 2,000 guests. Shiny Sheet tweeted that guests included ex-NBA players Scottie Pippen and Patrick Ewing, as well as film maker Spike Lee. In addition to Pippen, Gossip Extra says Jordan’s former Chicago Bulls teammates Ron Harper and Toni Kukoc also attended the ceremony. Golfer Tiger Woods was another guest from the sporting world who was in attendance.

Jordan and Prieto wed in the same church where Donald Trump got married — the Episcopal Church at Bethesda-by-the-Sea in Palm Beach. Below are photos of the church where the wedding took place, plus another picture of the massive must-see tent where the reception took place:

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