Michael Jordan may have North Carolina license plates (“First in Flight”) and own the NBA franchise in Charlotte, but he’s still an intimidating figure in Chicago. The six-time champion with the Chicago Bulls, known for getting his way on and off the court, recently had his legal team apply the legendary Jordan pressure to 89-year-old U.S. District Judge Milton Shadur–and Shadur ended up knocked out like so many Cleveland Cavaliers.
Jordan is suing a local supermarket chain for using his image without permission in its advertising. (In itself an astonishing bit of hubris, given that Jordan’s iconic image is among the most expensive and best protected in the world.) According to Jordan’s lawyers, Judge Shadur thought the basketball star was being a “hog” in seeking compensation for this breech. (Jordan is worth, by some accounts, $1 billion, most of which derives from the marketing of his image.) The negative publicity campaign against Judge Shadur ended with the judge withdrawing from the case–the honorable Shadur allowing that his disdain for the conduct of Jordan’s legal team might affect his ability to rule impartially. So Jordan’s legal team will get a new judge. The lawyers, trying to head off the appearance of greed, have said that Jordan will donate any damages to charity.