Michael Jordan doesn't have a bottle of champagne saved for the possibility the Golden State Warriors fail to pick up their 73rd win. In fact, the former Chicago Bulls star is taking the opposite approach.
According to Warriors sideline reporter Rosalyn Gold-Onwude, Jordan spoke to Klay Thompson during All-Star Weekend, telling the 2-guard to "go ahead and break the record."
Of course, Jordan's comments likely won't have any impact on Golden State trying to supplant the 1995-96 Bulls as the winningest team in NBA regular-season history. Still, it's good to see the biggest legend in the game welcome the challenge.
Whether or not the Warriors will get to 73 wins is the biggest question in the league this season—just ahead of whether anybody can beat Golden State in the playoffs. Even President Barack Obama alluded to the Warriors' chase when they visited the White House earlier this month to celebrate their 2014-15 NBA title. NBA TV captured the interaction:
NBA TV @NBATV
"It is rare to be in the presence of a guy from the greatest team in @NBA history..." @POTUS https://t.co/CvtOXveafU2016-2-4 19:25:11
According to NBA.com, the reigning champions are one game better than the 1995-96 Bulls after 52 games, and they need to go 25-5 to close the regular season with the record.
The longer the season goes, the more head coach Steve Kerr will have to weigh 73 wins against putting his team in the best position possible for the playoffs. Thompson isn't concerned about the issue.
"We'll probably rest guys down the stretch," Thompson said Friday in an interview with ESPN Radio (via ESPN.com's Marc Stein). "But we're so deep of a team that we should have a chance to win every night.
"Obviously, we're playing for more than just 73 wins—we're playing for a championship—but if it's right there for us, we might as well try and take it."