How Michael Jordan’s competitive streak extends beyond the NBA

Michael Jordan is the biggest name in professional basketball, having spent his career smashing records in the NBA for the Chicago Bulls before finishing his career at the Washington Wizards. The other MJ was a six-time NBA champion and the game’s first billionaire. He was a force to be reckoned with on the court between 1984 and 2003 and will rightly go down as the best player in a golden generation for the NBA.

The professional athlete, businessman, and movie star has a competitive streak and an insatiable will to win. That competitive streak has followed him into retirement, and the original and best Space Jam star has found the perfect outlet. Jordan’s love for sportsbook gambling and casino play is well-known today, but it’s nothing new. The imposing 6ft 6inch celebrity has long enjoyed the thrill of playing cards for cash against fellow pros with earth-shattering pots of money.

He’s not the only sports star to try their luck on the best casino games, including roulette. Today, hundreds of athletes meet millions of players worldwide at online gambling apps. To join them, read the reviews of apps like BetNow to find the best. Or keep reading as we reflect on a marathon poker game involving Michael and other NBA stars that helped the legend win on the court.

What attracts Jordan to casino

Jordan isn’t the only legendary sportsperson who has admitted love for casinos and gambling. It’s easy to see the attraction. Being a successful professional athlete takes dedication, a calm mind, concentration, focus, and self-belief. A player must believe they are the best in the world. There’s no room for doubt. Michael’s talent may seem God-given, but it’s the product of countless hours of practice, sacrifice, and dedication.

Now let’s look at Jordan’s abilities as a poker player. He’s able to keep a poker face against formidable opposition. He is rarely the most experienced player at a table, but that doesn’t hold him back or create doubt in his mind. Even if he has a dreadful hand and little chance of winning, you’d never guess from his facial expressions or reactions. Like on the court, he’s calm under pressure, knowing he’s in control.

Of course, you don’t have to be a star of the NBA or a professional athlete to enjoy success in poker. You don’t need to have that drive and self-belief to be the best player on the planet, either. If you’re willing to learn and have the time to dedicate to learning poker and other competitive card games, it won’t take long to get up to speed.

You can learn the basics of poker for free online. There are countless videos and pages of information available. Gambling apps also have a section that allows newbies to practice without spending any cash. The free-to-play games are the best way to ramp up your experience and skill levels without leaving a hole in your pocket.

Today, hundreds of athletes meet millions of players worldwide at online gambling apps. To join them, read the reviews of apps like BetNow to find the best.

The inside story

A famous story about Michael Jordan’s love of playing cards gives another example of his desire to win at all costs in the NBA. Michael reportedly played cards with opposition players for five hours before a big game. During that game, he made predictions about his performance and told how he would ensure his team won by scoring more than 40 points. He was true to his word too.

After that marathon game, Jordan took himself off to prepare for the upcoming game. But he sneakily left time in his preparations to inform the opposition coach what his players had been doing when they were supposed to be resting for the play. It didn’t go down well, but Jordan was true to his predictions.

After clearing out the pot and leaving even wealthier than when he started, Michael took to the court and did as he had predicted, scoring over 40 points in the game to blow away the competition, leaving them in no doubt Michael’s gifts weren’t restricted to sports.

The story was told to the press by Phoenix Suns player Eddie Johnson when asked about Jordan’s mindset as a player. Johnson explained that Jordan takes everything personally, wanting to show he’s the best at anything he does. The Sun’s star is in no doubt his opposite number is the best NBA player ever and was proud to share a court with the great man, even on the back of defeat.

Other athletes who play casino

Michael Jordan isn’t the only famous name from the world of professional basketball with a love for playing poker. The list is endless, and in most circumstances, it’s seen as a great way to run down the clock and waste time waiting for a game to begin. Rest is crucial to giving a solid performance, but it can be tedious and cause some players to lose focus.

Playing cards is a great way to keep the mind on track, and the body relaxed. Poker takes concentration and focus without the player needing too much physical activity, which is ideal for keeping them in shape for the play. It’s no surprise that playing cards is enjoyed by many sports players before a big game, from the NBA to college basketball.

Jordan becoming too involved and playing to win is something he can’t shake. It’s a way for the now 60-year-old to show his competitiveness in all situations. But is he thawing as he gets older? It’s not likely. It would be a surprise to see that will to win fade in such a legend of sports.

How you can get involved

Fancy improving your poker game or playing your favorite casino? You’ll find many free-to-play and real-money casino apps to download to your smartphone.

When registering, you’ll receive a welcome bonus free bet which you can use to target a profit, playing for small stakes as you build experience. Download a free poker app to your smartphone and play your favorite table and slots from anywhere.