Monday, May 24th, 2010 at 11:26 am  |  5 responses

SLAM #139

Still Captivated

Originally published in SLAM 139

The 6th Man: I’d be lying if I said I had such a grand plan for this issue when we first talked about it as a staff, but as I flip through the page proofs in the days before it goes to print, it strikes me that this issue is what this magazine is all about. The two most prominent, work-intensive stories cover the two subjects that SLAM couldn’t have made it this far without: Michael Jordan and high school All-Americans.

Think about it. Michael is the one who made this whole thing possible. The one whose greatness on the court and business savvy off it took basketball from a sport to a way of life. We’ve covered him as closely as possible for our entire existence, with this month’s two MJ stories—and all the attention his buying of the Bobcats has gotten—serving as the latest proof of the hold he still has on everyone who follows the game.

At the other end of the spectrum are the young kids, the SLAM All-Americans. In their own way, the five players we pick each year (this year’s group is Perry Jones, Kyrie Irving, Jared Sullinger, Brandon Knight and Harrison Barnes) as the best high schoolers in America are as important to SLAM as Mr. Jordan. The talent they possess, the hard work they put in, the entertainment they provide, it all adds up to proof of what he inspired. And SLAM got that from day one. From the Punks section to high school diarists to hanging banners and giving out mags in gyms across the country, we’ve always known that for every big-time baller (none bigger than Mike, of course) there were thousands of kids striving to take his place, and they deserve love, too.

If you’re not feeling the connection yet, guess what all these guys were in New York for when we brought them to Times Square for this photo shoot? The Jordan Brand Classic, of course.


Ben Osborne

Issue 139 Jordan

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  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    I JUST got this issue in the mail two days ago (sometimes I think y’all hook up your european readers before you get to me in Alaska) and it is dope. Anytime MJ is on the cover it’s an instant classic, in my opinion. I also agreed 100% with your HS All-Americans selections.

  • http://www.bulls.com Enigmatic

    I do have one beef with y’all though. I been waiting all year long for you guys to get at Jereme Richmond, the Illinois-commit and McD’s All-American out of Waukegan HS (IL). I met dude last year when Waukegan smashed my alma-mater, Dundee-Crown HS, at the state semi-finals. He’s real humble and down to earth, Champaign is gonna love this kid. When I got ish 139 I figured, ok, dude’s GOTTA be in this issue, right? I mean, he’s a consensus top 40 player and an All-American. Y’all gotten at lesser-ranked cats all year long. Hell, you guys got at future teammate Meyers Leonard, when everyone knows Richmond is the star of the inoming Illinois class. But other than Jereme being on your All-American honorable-mention, I got nada. Please tell me that was a result of not being able to coordinate with him, I realize he’s not on the same level as a Harrison Barnes or a Perry Jones (though the potential is definitely there) but dude definitely deserved some shine in Punks.

  • Logues

    the only thing bad about this whole issue is the cheap-made cover. i received it in the mail and it honestly looked as if i already read it a thousand times and almost like i left it sit out in the rain for a night. This was the worst crinkled mag ive got. this has actually made me consider canceling my subscription (i prolly wont) and just buying it at the store, which im sure u guys dont care cuz im buying it anyway and u make more money off me buying it rather than subscribing, but still. i look back a few yrs ago and they were so smooth and fresh. my first ish 95 looks newer and in better shape than this one. y’all cant make it any better?

  • http://10ElderStreet,NorthDunedin,Dunedin,NewZealand James

    I still havent got my issue :_( My subscription doesnt run out to 2012???? I want to read this one!!! haha

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