Kareem went after MJ during an event in D.C. last week for an incident that went down back in '92 ... when Jordan reportedly refused to help black democrat Harvey Gantt in his campaign to unseat racist republican senator Jesse Helms because "Republicans buy sneakers, too."
Kareem said, "You can’t be afraid of losing shoe sales if you’re worried about your civil and human rights. [Jordan] took commerce over conscience. It’s unfortunate for him, but he’s gotta live with it."
But Ron isn't buying what Kareem is selling -- claiming MJ is a "very conscientious kind of guy."
"He may not come out and tell the world [what his values are] ... but he's one of the smartest guys I've ever been around."
"Some of the stuff he do may not get on TV on camera like some other athletes like to portray themselves as, conscientious Americans, but my boy MJ ... he knows what he's doing in life. Michael Jordan is caring."
Seems D'Angelo Russell is already used to the Hollywood lifestyle ... 'cause not only is he rocking a swagged out $5k custom bag ... but A-list mega star Jamie Foxx helped him get it.
The Lakers rookie turned heads when he showed up to his debut regular season game rocking a seriously blinged out Louis Stewart custom backpack.
We spoke to the guys over at Louis Stewart ... and they tell us D'Angelo dropped $5k cash for the lambskin bag ... which is draped in Swarovski crystals and features the LS signature red suede interior.
Only thing more dope than the bag? How D'Angelo got it ... our LS guys tell us Russell was in Vegas for the Mayweather/Pacquiao fight when he noticed Jamie Foxx had one that was similar.
He asked Jamie what the bag was, which prompted the Academy Award winner to call LS and put them in touch with Russell. Money was exchanged ... and the rest is style history.
Seems Mark Cuban buried the hatchet with Clippers owner Steve Ballmer Thursday night ... 'cause last night, they were blowing kisses to each other on kiss cam.
Cuban and Ballmer were both at Staples Center for the first time their teas faced off since the infamous DeAndre Jordan incident over the summer ... where D.A. backed out of a deal with the Mavs and re-signed with the Clips.
You knew there was gonna be tension between the owners ... but nothing a little smoochie smooch couldn't fix, as captured by our friends at BSO.
The Los Angeles Lakers will have a moment of silence before tonight's home opener to honor Flip Saunders ... the Minnesota Timberwolves coach who passed away this past weekend.
It just so happens that the Lakers play Minnesota tonight -- and a rep for the team tells us, "Our players will be wearing a special t-shirt during pre-game warmups and also we will do a brief moment of silence for Flip just before the national anthem."
Flip was one of the most beloved and respected coaches in the NBA. He died on Sunday after a battle with cancer.
Ex-NBA stud Jay Williams has found a reason to come back to basketball ... to shut the mouth of "Guy Code" star Andrew Schulz who dared to challenge the former #2 pick to a game of 1-on-1.
This all started after Schulz claimed he could "put seven points" on Williams when Jay was a guest on "The Brilliant Idiots" podcast last month ... a show Schulz co-hosts with Charlamagne Tha God.
Jay took that as a challenge ... and immediately agreed to a 1-on-1 game to 7 points for $500. In fact, Jay's so confident, HE'S SPOTTING ANDREW 6 POINTS!!
If you think it's a joke YOU'RE WRONG. This game is happening in NYC on November 1st ... and when we spoke with both men about the hoops battle ... EPIC SMACK TALK occurred.
Andrew: "He's about to to get it. I'm willing to do whatever I have to do to win. I'll yell out the name of the motorcycle he crashed while he's shooting to throw him off. Whatever I gotta do, I have nothing to lose."
"I played ball in high school, plus the dude has a drop foot. I know I can get one bucket off him. Saying I won't score one is where he f**ked up."
Jay: "I'm serious. Let's hoop for real. People think I can't play anymore. I might not be able to chase around Kyrie and Chris Paul on back to back nights, but this is easy."
"I been trying to make this happen since he first opened his mouth. He made excuses like his ankle was sore yet I'm the one that's had 13 SURGERIES. He's scared."
Rick Ross is a forgiving boss ... 'cause even though LeBron James took his talents back to Cleveland, the rap superstar is making a royal gesture that proves he's still down with the king.
Ross is building a new basketball court in his Atlanta mega-mansion ... and when it was time to choose greats to grace his floor, he picked a usual suspect ... Michael Jordan ... and a wild card ... LeBron James.
Why is James a wild card? Ross is a HUGE Miami Heat fan ... so you might think he'd be done with LBJ being that LeBron spurned MIA to return to his Ohio home last year.
He ain't done ... so much so that when we spoke to Jay Mack -- the artist tasked with creating the LeBron and Jordan murals -- he told us Ross moved heaven and earth ... flying him down personally to do the arduous month long job of getting the hardwood homages done.
Next legends to grace the court? Jay says Kobeand Shaq.
First time they'll peacefully share the court in about 15 years.
The Game just went full Master P ... saying he won't watch a Lakers game this year if the team doesn't immediately sign Lamar Odom ... when he's felling well enough to play.
Game was out in L.A. when we asked him if he thinks Lamar could be back on the court ... a tall order being that Odom still has a long medical road ahead of him ... including a possible kidney transplant ... just to live a normal life.
Check out the clip -- Game is adamant that Lamar could be back but goes further and says he SHOULD be back ... telling our guy he "won't watch a game" unless the team ... including Kobe Bryant ... gives LO another shot.
Kobe Bryant isn't taking Master P's insults kindly -- claiming the rapper's decision to question his support of Lamar Odom was downright "insensitive."
It's clear Kobe caught wind of what Master P told TMZ Sports yesterday ... that he thinks Bryant is a "phony" friend to Odom who failed to help the ex-NBA star when he needed it the most.
Now, Kobe has issued a statement on Twitter -- and though he doesn't mention P directly, there's no doubt who the message is for.
"When WE feel the need to question the support of others in moments as critical as a life hanging in the balance, then we must question the kind of culture we have created that has led US to such insensitive suspicion."
Master P is coming out swingin' at Kobe Bryant -- saying Kobe's public display of emotion over Lamar Odom is an ACT ... because he had the chance to SAVE Lamar, but didn't step up when it counted.
Master P was charged up in the video -- saying he was "like a mentor" to Odom and personally knew how serious Lamar was about wanting to return to the NBA.
He says Kobe was also aware of the situation and could have used his clout with the Lakers to get Odom back on the squad, but instead did nothing.
"If Kobe was his friend ... Kobe, like, owns the team. He could've got the man back on the team ... that's all he wanted."
P also goes off on the NBA -- saying Odom was "blackballed" from the league over his decision to be on "Keeping Up with the Kardashians" ... because at the time, the NBA wanted nothing to do with them.
As for Khloe, P says he truly believed Odom loved her -- but made a mistake in marrying her because "he didn't realize what he was getting into." He concludes with a warning to James Harden.