Despite Being Turned Down by Michael Jordan 15 Years Ago, 25 YO MLB Star Recalls MJ’s Rejection That Fueled His Hunger

Published 09/12/2023, 1:30 PM EDT

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Michael Jordan‘s name is synonymous with “winning”. Having inspired the new generation of NBA players to always strive for excellence, his influence transcended the game of basketball. People from all over the world drew inspiration from the amazing journey of Michael ‘His Airness’ Jordan. As the first ever athlete-billionaire in the world, he inspired many professional athletes from different sports.

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In a recent podcast interview, 25-year-old MLB star recalls MJ’s rejection from 15 years ago that fueled his fire.

Michael Jordan’s “Cold” Rejection

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The 25-year-old MLB star Jazz Chisholm talks about the first time when he met the Chicago Bulls legend in an interview for “Bleacher Report.” The ‘Miami Marlins’ star says, “Michael Jordan had a soft ball celebrity game in the Bahamas at Atlantis. My step-dad was one of the umpires in the match, so I got to go and my whole Little League was there.“.

He continues, “I saw Jordan sneaking out of the back so I ask him for an autograph. He turns around and says, “One day make me want your autograph kid” and just walks off.“. The 25-year-old further says, “That’s why I wanted to be a Jordan athlete so bad. I wanted to go tell him that because now I am a Jordan athlete, he has my autograph.“.

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The MLB star was just 10-years-old at that time, but it certainly motivated him to become a professional baseball player. After being drafted into the ‘Miami Marlins’ in 2020, Jazz Chisholm is currently in his 3rd year of his MLB career. Michael Jordan’s inspiring words to a young Jazz Chisholm, speaks volumes of the mentality with which Jordan lived his life.

This is not the first time Michael Jordan’s words have inspired professional athletes. He once showed ‘tough love’ to an iconic Lakers legend who went on to win multiple NBA championships later on.

When Jordan inspired a legendary NBA Hall of Famer

During Jordan’s final season (2003) in the NBA, he played for the Washington Wizards. In one of NBA’s most memorable moments, Michael Jordan said this to a young Kobe Bryant after the Black Mamba loses the game wearing Jordan 7s, “You can put the shoes on, but you’ll never fill them.”.

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This inspired the Black Mamba’s 55 point performance over ‘His Airness’ the next time both their teams met in the regular NBA season of 2023. Michael Jordan’s NBA journey is a blueprint for any aspiring athlete looking to go pro.

His iconic NBA championship runs with the Chicago Bulls in the 1990s inspired an entire generation of basketball players to ‘take flight’ with their seemingly impossible dreams. His record of 6 out of 6 NBA Final MVPs is unbeaten till this day in modern NBA.

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What are your thoughts on Michael Jordan’s inspiring words about the 25-year-old MLB star? Let us know in the comments below!

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Written by:

Akhil Chakravarthy

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Akhil is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. He has been following the NBA for more than a decade and represented his state at the National level. To hone his understanding of the inner workings of the game, he closely follows the analysis of popular NBA insiders and reporters like Adrian Wojnarowski and Shams Charania.
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Edited by:

Debmallya Chakraborty

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