“….There is one arena in which [Lebron] James has topped the man he wants to dethrone as the Greatest Basketball Player of All Time…. James has become the moral leader of the NBA….
“There’s absolutely zero chance that Michael Jordan would ever endorse a wildcat strike [such as the one proposed against Donald Sterling]. He’s always been incredibly careful not to say anything that might interfere with the massive marketing apparatus that he built or could in any way give the perception that the entire totality of his being wasn’t focused on destroying any and all opponents in his path on the court.
“In 1990, he was asked to support the progressive black mayor of Charlotte, Harvey Gantt, who was challenging an icon of racial animosity in Jesse Helms. As Nike’s chief pitchman, Jordan famously refused to give his endorsement because ‘Republicans buy sneakers too.’ ”
— From “LeBron James Is a Better Leader Than Michael Jordan Ever Was” by Robert Silverman in the Daily Beast (May 15)
Surely, “Republicans buy sneakers too” remains Jordan’s most memorable quote. (Alas, there’s not much competition.) But did he really say it?