I remember Wilt Chamberlain used to minimize Michael Jordan's accomplishments when Jordan started setting records. Jealousy, wanting to stay relevant, refusal to admit next generation might be better than you, who knows? I remember Jordan being very gracious about it. So it took me by surprise when Jordan said Stephen Curry was not a Hall of Famer yet. I'm not a big Curry fan, and he's out again for months, but even I think he is a Hall of Famer. Is Jordan now going through what Wilt went through?
Hey, I was quoted out of context! That's always a go-to explanation, and though Jordan was on tape for that, I don't think his personality was explained. We know Jordan's competitive nature, which extends to conversation, and the way to often win a conversation or debate (see politics) is with a quip or good line. Got-cha! Jordan is great with the last word, and it got him in an uncomfortable debate thanks to me. Though I'll be direct first and say, no, he isn't jealous of Curry or refusing to accept he's past his prime. Though I'm sure Michael would play him. Even at golf. It was with the famous "Republicans buy sneakers, too" comment I used in one of my books about Jordan.
Jordan back then loved the give and take with media in which he could test and expand his knowledge and beliefs. So I was bringing up North Carolina politics and the racist Jesse Helms and back then the players were asked to refrain from political discussions. Even Kareem in the 80s was similarly quiet, though Barkley would occasionally say he was running for governor as as a Republican. It was part gag as he'd say his mother would tell him the Republicans are for the rich and Barkley would grandly say he told his mother he's rich. Anyway, Jordan dug up a one liner to close it as Republicans buy sneakers, too, as a win the argument last word. It worked and we went on to why he couldn't shoot threes. Anyway, it became a political philosophy, which was unfair and inaccurate, though it fit the agenda of many in this era when political commentary from sports figures is much more acceptable. So no one much cared about the fact as much as the ability to use Jordan for a stereotype and tone deaf.
As for Curry, well, he isn't in the Hall of Fame. Because, you know, Curry is not retired. But sometimes Michael can be a bit too subtle. I'm fairly sure even he believes his legacy is secure.