Wednesday, June 9th, 2010 at 2:19 pm  |  33 responses

Michael Jordan’s Latest Comeback

Can His Airness take the 2K series to another level?

by Rey Moralde / @TheNoLookPass

Michael Jordan is back on the basketball court. Well, nMichael Jordan 2K 11ot exactly in real life. But he’s going to be in the latest game of the popular NBA 2K video game series, NBA 2K11. And he is going to be the cover athlete in this edition. Not only is he on the cover and playable… but he’s going to help develop the game with the makers of the NBA 2K series, Take Two Interactive Software.

We all know Michael Jordan is possibly the biggest icon in NBA history. Even in video games, he was quite difficult to get a hold of. The reasons were mostly for licensing issues. Old NBA series like NBA Shootout by Sony for the PlayStation (anyone remember that?) settled for filling in “ROSTER GUARD” in Jordan’s place. Sony couldn’t use Jordan’s likeness but they definitely gave Jordan’s attributes to the character.

Jordan’s past video game endorsements weren’t exactly sparkling. Let’s consider the games he was featured in outside of the usual big basketball video game franchises (NBA 2K, NBA Live, NBA JAM, NBA Shootout, NBA In The Zone, NBA Inside Drive… remember that one? Nah, let’s move on.)

Jordan Vs Bird: The player can pick either Jordan or Larry Bird in a one-on-one contest, 3-point shootout, or slam dunk contest. I wasn’t too impressed with this game when I first played it for the old 8-Bit Nintendo.

Space Jam: This was pretty much a homeless man’s version of the beloved NBA JAM. Well, there are some mini-games in here that can actually increase the attributes of the characters in an attempt to make the game a little more versatile. Other than that, unless you really, really wanted everything Space Jam-related or you were 8 years old, this game waChaos in the Windy Citys a total waste of time. I should know. My nephew owned it at one time.

Chaos In The Windy City: This wasn’t a basketball game at all. This was more of an action-type game in the lines of Super Mario Bros. The premise was that Jordan’s teammates for a charity All-Star game went missing and he had to rescue them. OK, now that I think about it… the premise makes this game more similar to Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker. To help him in his quest, he uses basketballs to attack the bad guys. He can power those basketballs up, too, along the way (ex. Flaming Basketball, Basketball Bombs, etc.).

Yeah, I have played this game a couple of times and, at the time, I didn’t think it played too bad. It controlled pretty well and it was, for a lack of a better term, interesting. But it was because of the awful premise that Chaos In The Windy City is generally regarded as one of the worst video games of all-time. I’d love to play it again because I like playing “terrible games.” But don’t mind me; I’m just insane.

So that laundry list of games Michael Jordan was in weren’t exactly the most impressive. But this pretty much mirrors Jordan’s attitude: he always wants to get better. And for his next video game endorsement, he can hardly get better than being on the cover of NBA 2K11. The NBA 2K series has been superior for a long time. In addition to having a game that plays pretty close to a real NBA game, their covers have been one of their biggest selling points. In the last few years, the covers had actually been announced during the NBA Finals so that has become an event in itself. Michael Jordan is also quite the departure from all the previous NBA 2K covers. Normally, the 2K Sports crew from Take Two gets active NBA superstars for their covers so this is the first time the NBA 2K series went for a legend as a cover athlete. Jordan joins this list of great players…

Allen Iverson: Iverson was on the cover for five consecutive seasons (NBA 2K through NBA 2K4). He was a rising star when Take Two first got a hold of him and, in 2001 (before the 2K2 cover), he won the Most Valuable Player award. Definitely the right face for the fledgling series at the time.

Ben Wallace: Wallace snagged the cover of NBA 2K5 after the workmanlike Detroit Pistons won the title. Felt it was a good choice as Wallace was the Ben Wallace 2K5heart and soul of that team.

Shaquille O’Neal: The Big Whatever-You-Want-To-Call-Him became the cover athlete for NBA 2K6 after he rejuvenated his career in Miami. He actually won a championship with Dwyane Wade after that season so he was brought back a second straight time for NBA 2K7.

Chris Paul: We all thought CP3 was a nice up-and-coming star when he was named as the NBA 2K8 cover athlete. Maybe it’s the power of the 2K cover but he went on to have an MVP-type of season and led the Hornets to 56 wins and the second round of the Playoffs.

Kevin Garnett: KG, who was MVP at one time (2004), got to be the NBA 2K9 cover boy right before he played his first game of the Finals. He would win the championship two weeks later.

Kobe Bryant: We all know Kobe Bryant is still regarded as one of the best players in the game today. He had pretty much the same scenario as Garnett. Kobe would also win an NBA championship about two weeks after he was bestowed the honor of being the NBA 2K10 cover athlete.

So this list isn’t too shabby. And I’m personally very excited that Michael Jordan gets to be on the cover of what I think is the best NBA video game series today, NBA 2K. The NBA 2K games keep getting better and better and I believe Jordan’s name and touch will take this series to another level.

Though I’m sure Kobe Bryant is going to enjoy this, too. For the first time in his life, Michael Jordan is actually following Kobe Bryant on something.

Rey Moralde is the founder and editor of TheNoLookPass.com.

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  • LD

    The only reason they didn’t pick LeBron is because they don’t know what team he is going to be on. So they had to settle for the second sbest basketball player of al time.

  • http://manutebogues.blogspot.com cramzy

    forget the cover, they gotta get it together with all these glitches in the games. I can’t even get through a full game without it freezing or the refS passing the ball to each other over and over, even with all the patches they send out.

  • Drew

    I wonder if this will help the Bobcats get to at least the 2nd round of the playoffs next year.

  • Drew

    @LD – I’m sure you’re being sarcastic.

  • http://TheNoLookPass.Com Rey Moralde

    cramzy: I don’t know, man. I have had no problems getting through a game. And I think the refs passing the ball over and over is awesome. It adds to the comedy.

  • http://slamonline.com JL

    @drew- unless his name stands for Lebron’s D!ck

  • ashya

    Screw Michael Jordan. He is walking around with a Hitler mustache. He is an illuminati devil that sacrificed his father for fortune and fame beyond basketball. He is nothing but a self hating racist sellout. What person in their right mind (beside a racist, Nazi or Nazi lover) would wear a Hitler mustache. Jordan sucks (literally ask the powerful white men that have allowed him his wealth, fortune and fame). What a joke.

  • Hussman25

    /\ THAT COMMENT CAME FROM FAR LEFT FIELD…. Ive been waiting to play w/ an authentic Jordan for 20some years… Thanks 2K.

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Cawford

    @ ashya:

    You really came all the way over from your cave to make that random ass comment on SLAM?

  • snasty10

    wow ashya wow, but me and my buddies were just talking about his hitler mustache the other day, and the illumanati in hip hop.

  • T.O.M.

    yo oh boy is crazy people need to watch him that’s some mental problem ish right there. But other than the sadist I’m ready mj grace the cover.

  • rich

    @phsychopath above me

    im more interested with how realistic jordan’s tounge moves on the court not off it, thank you, if they recycle 2k10 and have legends teams i consider it a success

  • http://slamonline.com JL

    i remember nba street when they had a achy jordan who would grab his back sometimes. that was hilarious.

  • Yesse

    Nice article. I’m glad MJ is back on videogames, because he has been missing since Nba live 2005.

  • Yesse

    @ Ashya: Sure, he might be a freemason, but i don’t think MJ has ever exposed himself like LeBron James and MJ also has some so called anger management issues. He was a good player back in the day.

  • http://www.twitter.com/gerardhimself Gerard Himself

    “second best basketball player”… sigh… if they would “settle” for the “second best basketball player” it would mean Kareem, Wilt, Oscar, or Bill would be on the cover. Or maybe Magic, Bird or Kobe. But yeah, let’s assume LD was sarcastic, so we can laugh about it

  • http://www.twitter.com/gerardhimself Gerard Himself

    “second best basketball player”… sigh… if they would “settle” for the “second best basketball player” it would mean Kareem, Wilt, Oscar, or Bill would be on the cover. Or maybe Magic, Bird or Kobe. But yeah, let’s assume LD was sarcastic, so we can laugh about it

  • GLImamasan

    @ LD… you smokin’ weed or somethin’? or you were probably in your diapers when Jordan ruled the NBA with his offensive AND defensive brilliance. Get your facts straight kiddo, or go back to wearing diapers

  • http://slamonline.com Bryan Crawford

    Nice to see somebody is posting comments under MY name…SMH.

  • don

    @LD. u d man. what a great reasoning eh? come to think of it, i believe you!

  • LD

    Drew is right about the sarcasm. JL is only half right. I wish I was his d!ck. LOL
    I was kinda hoping the first post could have been interpreted as Jordan being second best to Kareem or someone, but said in a away that sounded like I meant LeBron was the best ever. (I don’t even think he is top 20 yet)

  • http://nicekicks.com meloman2.0

    OMG that spacejam game was amazing!! and i still have it

  • dookie

    What about NBA Live 2000? He was a playable character there, wasn’t he?

  • dave

    dookie yes he was, you had to unlock him by beating him 1on1.

    i remember that game, i think tim duncan was the cover tahts why i loved it so much.

    its funny how all of the nba 2k cover athletes had good seasons during, before or after the cover, yet nba live cover stars get unlucky with injuries and what not.

  • Micheal Jordan

    Aight its cool yall can get off my nuts now, the only reason why I’m doing this cause I need the money,waste bread buying a wackass team damn this came just in time

  • LD

    Hey Mike! I know you retired before LeBron entered the NBA. But did you guys ever play one-on-one, like in the streets or something?

  • Groves@UWA

    2k or live, one of them has to pick up Rondo or LeBron for a cover, two of the biggest stars

  • wewanttacos

    cool! but i hope this doesnt fu*ck up the franchise. as long as its not that “crack baby” rondo on the cover its fine by me

  • lakers

    is he going to be in the bulls or whatt?

  • ai come back

    @ashya wtf when did mj become a freemason and why the fuck are u dissin mj here go tlk to yo little nazi sh#tloads about this. mj’s an american hero u the nazi……

  • http://www.nba.com/suns Dacre

    FINALLY, now just add Charles Barkley to the NBA 1990′s team and I’ll be happy.

  • slamfan4life

    I heard Brandon Jennings is on the Cover of NBA LIVE 11 oops i mean NBA ELITE…..and i dont really get it, Jennings is promising but DAMN

  • http://nba.com/cavaliers Stephon

    Wow its getting ugly with these comments, anyway glad MJ gracing the cover of NBA 2K11 i’m coping that soon as it come out.