Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Michael Jordan Returns

The word got out. Last year when I met Michael Jordan at the championship game for a 40-and-over league that he sponsors, I was the only journalist in the gym. There were some empty seats in the stands. This year was different.

The league’s director, Tony McCoy, found a publicist who had sent emails promoting the championship game. I knew there would be more people, but I didn’t expect so many on a Tuesday night. It was standing room only. There were several photographers and videographers, including a guy from CBS Channel 2. I sat under the basket almost the entire game. It is where you can get some of the most dramatic shots, and there were also no other journalists near me. I believe that’s important, getting the photo or perspective that no one else has.

Just after Michael arrived in the second half, I said hello and let him know I had a gift for him. He seemed relaxed and happy to be among some of his local basketball friends. When the game ended, everyone swarmed around him and he got trapped behind the scorer’s table. I had made a collage of basketball photos I had taken and wanted to give it to him. There were so many people that I never got to do so. His bodyguard, who I know, and local police escorted him from the building where he drove off in his black Mercedes SL 65. No one even seemed to recognize Charles Oakley or Michael Finley.


Jeff Hunter said...

It's good to be Mike.

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