Dubbed “Crying Jordan,” the meme exploded within the online sports world this year, with people using it to mock anyone who found themselves on the losing side.
“Michael Jordan is … more than just an Internet meme,” Obama said to the chuckling crowd that came to see Jordan and 20 other individuals receive the country’s highest civilian honor. “There is a reason you call someone the Michael Jordan of [something]. They know what you’re talking about because Michael Jordan is the Michael Jordan of greatness. He is the definition of somebody so good at what they do that everybody recognizes it. That’s pretty rare.”
Those kind words proved enough to make Jordan nearly — you guessed it — cry.
Which means, yes, the Internet, is back at it again.
The original Crying Jordan photo was snapped in 2009 by Associated Press photographer Stephan Savoia, who captured an emotional Jordan as he prepared to deliver his Hall of Fame speech. His Airness was brought to tears when the audience gave him a long standing ovation.