“Michael Jordan” (YOU Can’t Quit!)

by Kenny Eller on September 1, 2011

Michael Jordan didn't QUIT!

It was game four of 2-on-2 this past Saturday.  After having scored eight points in a row, I was struggling.  I was gassed and couldn’t find my wind.

Hands on my knees, stripped of energy, I pleaded to my brother, my teammate, slow it down!

An hour and a half before I had been bent over and clutching my bathroom sink, throwing up.   I wasn’t feeling well, but I didn’t let my opponents know that.

When I got to the gym that morning, as I attempted to force down an energy gel pack, I mentioned to my brother in passing that I had been sick earlier.  I then proceeded to let him know that I’d be fine and walked onto the court to warm-up.

I wasn’t fine, but I wanted to play.  I needed to play.

Now in game four, that need, had me running on fumes.

Up 8-3, I made my way to the three-point line and received the inbounds pass.  As my brother began running to the opposite wing, in an almost whisper like tone, he said, “Michael Jordan.”

A thousand images flashed through my mind in a split second.  I saw MJ back in Utah, wrinkled jersey, playing not on energy, but with HEART!

I pump faked, jab stepped to the middle, and went hard left for the lay-in.


Success in life isn’t as much about winning or losing, as it is about NOT QUITTING!

An amazing friend of mine posted the following quote on the mevsMJ.com Facebook page the other day:

“Now if you are going to win any battle you have to do one thing. You have to make the mind run the body. Never let the body tell the mind what to do. The body will always give up. It is always tired in the morning, noon, and night. But the body is never tired if the mind is not tired.” – George S. Patton, U.S. Army General, 1912 Olympian.

Last Saturday, my body wanted to quit, but my MIND and my HEART would not allow it!

We played seven games that morning and won four of seven.  We battled when we WERE NOT at our best!  We battled when MOST might have quit.  We battled because SUCCESS doesn’t come easy.

When you fight through struggle, YOU APPRECIATE the good times even more!

At some point this weekend, I will walk out on the basketball court ready to play.  Because of what happened this past Saturday, I will know exactly what I’m capable of when my body screams at me, “You’re tired!!”

I will know that to QUIT is not an option in this journey.  To LET UP is what others do.  To fight through the pain is what WINNERS like Michael Jordan do!

Michaaaeeeeel Jorrrrrrdaaaan….

Who’s ready to get better?!?!  Who’s ready to fight for their dreams?!?!

me vs. MJ…the journey continues!

The “Flu Game”

Here is video of Michael Jordan’s incredible 1997 NBA Finals performance in Game 5 against the Utah Jazz.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Jim Kerkvliet September 1, 2011 at 3:01 pm

Great article Kenny. As I was reading thru it, I could picture a cartoon that I used to keep on the bulletin board in back of my desk when I was working. It was a picture of a frog putting a choke hold on a pelican while inside of the pelican’s mouth. It is titled “Never Give Up”. I don’t know how to attach it to this reply but I will put it up on on Facebook with a mention of this post.


Kenny Eller Kenny Eller September 1, 2011 at 8:54 pm

Thanks Jim! 😀


Charissa Eller September 1, 2011 at 8:19 pm

Loved the part about the mind being stronger than the body. Just recently my mind had to prove my body wrong!


Kenny Eller Kenny Eller September 1, 2011 at 8:54 pm

Yeah, that’s a great quote! Thanks!


Dean September 4, 2011 at 7:47 pm

I have sometimes felt like I was in 3rd person controlling the mind controlling the body (usually during deathly long runs!). The mind must be in control!


Kenny Eller Kenny Eller September 4, 2011 at 7:52 pm

Haha, I hear ya on that man! Running is the perfect example of how much the mind MUST be in control! People tell me all the time, “I could never run that far” when discussing running and well, them telling themselves that is most of the problem.

Appreciate the comment!


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: