Everybody wants to “be like Mike”, but does anybody want to be Mike’s nephew? Imagine shooting jump shots alone every morning trying to live up to your uncles unbelievable legacy.
Justin Jordan has to live with this pressure every time he steps on the court, but he doesn’t mind working hard.
“I’ve got to work hard for everything on the court…I’m not one of those guys that things come easy for,” says Justin.
Some might say he does have things easy since he is related to the greatest basketball player to ever play the game.
“Me being Michael Jordan’s nephew just adds to the pressure…I don’t think it’s fair, but I’ve accepted it. It’s just something I try not to think about,” says Justin.
His main focus right now is to try to make the jump from role player on his team to a star. Last year, Justin averaged only 5 PPG as the Patriots’ sixth man, now he’s been asked to take on the brunt of the scoring load, set teammates up, defend the opposing team’s best player and become a vocal leader.
“It’s certainly a lot to ask…I could only imagine that having Michael Jordan as your uncle can be pretty daunting, but he handles it well. It’s not something he ever talks about really. He doesn’t get caught up in trying to prove that he’s worthy of the last name,” says Joel Justus, Patriots coach.
During the Cuthbertson vs. Patriots game, Michael Jordan made a star appearance to see his nephew play. All eyes were definitely on MJ, but more were on his nephew. Questions like, “Can Justin play like MJ?” surrounds the court.
Fans made remarks about everything from MJ’s latest sneakers to Justin’s jumpers that reminisced of MJ’s greatness. Although the game was between Cuthbertson and the Patriots, it seems the only thing that mattered was the last name Jordan.
“I’m not my uncle…I know people know that, but they can’t help but to compare because, well, he’s my uncle. I would like to say my game resembles my uncle’s game, but people would just take that too wrong. I actually play more like my dad. He taught me everything,” says Justin.