The NBA lockout has claimed another victim: Michael Jordan's vice-captaincy at the Presidents Cup.
Jordan, a decent-enough golfer who's had a touch more success in other fields, announced Wednesday that he won't be accompanying the U.S. team to Australia to play in the biennial competition. Jordan had served as one of Fred Couples' assistants during the team's victorious 2009 effort, motivating the troops and providing some complementary star power to Tiger Woods, who was still weeks away from the hydrant and everything after.
About a year ago, Couples, flush with victory and anticipating this competition, announced that Jordan would be returning to the ropes for the 2011 showdown. At the time, we questioned the move, wondering whether Jordan, still a viable force in the NBA from a management perspective, had his priorities in order.
And now it appears he does, and those priorities place the NBA first. "After careful consideration, it is with regret that I have decided to cancel my trip to Australia later this month for the Presidents Cup," Jordan said. "With the NBA labor situation unsettled ... I feel it is necessary that I remain in the country."
Couples named John Cook as Jordan's replacement, which is a solid choice. Cook has strong relationships with many of the players, including Woods, although Cook lags slightly behind Jordan in the NBA championships department. Jay Haas remains as the other co-captain, though Scottie Pippen is still available if needed.
The Presidents Cup runs from Nov. 17-20 at the Royal Melbourne Golf Club.
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