Heat rookie throws shade at Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan in a suit

Miami Heat rookie Kel’el Ware stirred some controversy earlier this week when he omitted Michael Jordan from his NBA Mount Rushmore. Ware argued that some of Jordan’s stats were inflated or outright falsified.

“I would say MJ but I heard that some of his stats was false,” Ware told the Miami Mic’d Up podcast.

Specifically, Ware referenced the report by Yahoo! Sports’ Tom Haberstroh that purported to show some statistical discrepancies during the 1988 season when Jordan was named Defensive Player of the Year. The report included testimony from former Vancouver Grizzlies scorekeeper Alex Rucker, who confirmed that stat padding for hometown players was the norm.

A review of several games found that Jordan was credited with more steals than he actually had.

Ware ultimately decided on Wilt Chamberlain, Kobe Bryant, Anthony Edwards, and Heat teammate Bam Adebayo for his Mount Rushmore. The omission of Jordan and the inclusion of Adebayo should be disqualifying, and that’s without even pointing out that Bryant played during the Tim Donaghy era. Many still feel the Los Angeles Lakers benefitted from Donaghy and the game-fixing scandal.

But even with Jordan set aside, Ware skipped over LeBron James, Bill Russell, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Magic Johnson and several others who the case could be made for.

Rookies gonna rookie.

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