His favorite coach is going to be reading poetry by a trout stream. His favorite teammate is going to be playing in some other NBA city. His favorite rebounder is going to be...well, who knows? With no Phil Jackson, no Scottie Pippen and no Dennis Rodman in Chicago, Jordan will make sure there's no Jordan. His Airness, 35, couldn't abide playing for a team that won't be contending for a championship, and that description fits next year's Bulls.
You retire when you can no longer perform exceptionally, when competition and adulation no longer excite you or when your body is racked by injury, none of which applies to Jordan. He thinks he won't play for anyone but Jackson, but that will change when he and owner Jerry Reinsdorf sit down for a chat. Jordan will emerge with another $35 million, and Reinsdorf will emerge with his luxury boxes full for one more season.