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This week, Michael Jordan will be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame. He will always be remembered for his many accomplishments and record-breaking achievements in the sport. However, as President Obama prepares to put on a full-court press for health care reform in a speech to Congress tonight, he needs only to look back at one performance from "His Airness" to gain inspiration.
Twelve years ago, in the NBA Finals, Michael Jordan was going to lose. Sick with the flu, he could barely walk, and his aura of invincibility had been shattered in the eyes of the American public. Mike was going to finally relinquish one of his many titles and Karl Malone was going to get the championship that we all now know he never received.
But Mike was Mike, and Karl wasn't. Mike found a way to win and Karl Malone found a way to become "posterized" as yet another footnote in the astonishing legacy of the great Michael Jordan. Every great man or woman has an opportunity to build his or her legend, and it comes during the most trying of times. It is how we respond to these moments that make the difference between becoming Michael Jordan or just another Charles Barkley.