Column on miscellaneous topics opened with this lead item in the Arizona Daily Sun on Jan. 30, 2003:
McGrady does the right thing in offering spot to MJ
By Ed Odeven
Orlando Magic superstar Tracy McGrady deserves a pat on the back for offering to come off the bench in the NBA All-Star Game on Feb. 9 so Michael Jordan can start, even though Jordan turned down McGrady’s offer.
For a player averaging a league-best 30.2 points per game, McGrady is demonstrating that his ego is not nearly as big as his paycheck or his encyclopedia-thick book of unstoppable one-on-one moves.
“I’ve got plenty more chances of being an All-Star starter,” McGrady told The Associated Press. “It’s about me being there and witnessing his last All-Star game. It’s a blessing, man. It’s an honor, too.”
Obviously, McGrady understands Jordan’s invaluable impact on the game and realizes that as MJ’s career winds down, he deserves one more special day in the spotlight.
“What he’s done to the game, for the game, he’s very inspirational, especially for a guy like me who grew up watching Michael Jordan,” McGrady said. “He’s always been known for being an All-Star starter, so why not?”
In other words, McGrady is smart enough to know what’s good for the game. As Kool Moe Dee once said, “Knowledge is king.”