‘Failing’ to Match LeBron James and Stephen Curry, Michael Jordan’s 1 Rule Knocked Him Out of Elite List

Published 09/20/2023, 11:30 AM EDT

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Few names in the sports world evoke the same reverence and admiration as Michael Jordan. Yet, amid the praise and accolades, there was one thing that he could not accomplish. There was an intriguing part of Jordan’s storied career that prevented him from getting his name etched alongside LeBron James and Stephen Curry as the 3-point leaders. It was his most fascinating and deliberate choice to stay away from that list. 

Why do you think he eschewed this vital part of the game? Let’s dig deeper to find out the truth.

Why Michael Jordan doesn’t wish to shoot 3-pointers


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In an interview after the 1992 finals, the Chicago Bulls’ legend revealed why he had almost no interest in mastering his skills as a scorer out of the arc. Well, this was the reason he could not beat Curry and James in the top 10 list of 3-point leaders of all time. Yet, again surprising the people, he explained, “My game is fake, drive to the hole, penetrate, dish-off, dunk. Whatever and when you have that mentality of making threes, you don’t go to the hole as much. You go to the three-point line and start sitting there, waiting for someone to find you.” He elaborated, “That’s not my mentality, and I don’t want to create it because it takes away from the other parts of my game.”

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While the NBA great was spectacular in his mid-range shots, the 3-point game simply went against his playing style. Moreover, Warriors player Curry has a much more enhanced three-pointer record than his Airness.


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However, his rule never meant that he could not master it. 



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Michael Jordan’s best 3-point game

Back in 1989-1990, he attempted 245 three-point shots and made 37.6% of his threes. He made 92 three-pointers, a significant leap from his previous seasons. Then again in the 1995 season, he made 42.7 % of his three-pointers. Moreover, in the 1996-97 NBA season, Michael Jordan won his 9th NBA scoring title as he averaged 29.6 points per game with 37.4 %. 

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His accuracy from beyond the arc highlighted his evolving offensive repertoire. Jordan’s ability to threaten opponents both inside and outside the paint solidified his status as one of the league’s most unstoppable forces.

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Written by:

Pritha Debroy


One take at a time

Pritha is an NBA writer at Essentially Sports. She has long been a fan of the NBA and the Portland Trail Blazers. With prior experience in lifestyle writing, she aims to deliver a fair assessment of the happenings from the NBA world, both on and off the court.
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Edited by:

Yeswanth Praveen