First of all, I have thoroughly enjoyed the first eight parts of “The Last Dance” documentary.
It has been refreshing for me to relive those Chicago Bulls dynasty years where Michael Jordan and co. dominated the NBA — even if it meant seeing my New York Knicks come up short against them (damn you, Charles Smith!). Seeing what occurred behind the scenes made me appreciate Jordan that much more in terms of his domination, his aura, and the determination that helped him become one of the top three best basketball players of all time (Magic Johnson is my #1, followed by Kareem Abdul Jabbar).
Unfortunately for Jordan, that determination have rubbed many people watching the documentary the wrong way.
We’ve seen the tales of Jordan punching Steve Kerr in the eye during a practice after the latter stood up for himself. Jordan did the same to Luc Longley, also during a practice session. Judd Buchler called Jordan an ass, even though he was glad to have him as a teammate.
How about that time where he told a flight attendant not to serve Horace Grant any food because he “played like shit”?! Man listen, I don’t blame Grant for being bitter over that then — and apparently NOW.
And the worst of it was how he did Scott Burrell. There’s no way in the world no grown man, no less one who was a great player during his UConn days (he became the first player in NCAA history to compile over 1,500 points, 750 rebounds, 275 assists and 300 steals), should allow another man to demean him and call him a “ho”. Yet Burrell, being the nice guy that he is, turned the other cheek and wasn’t too bothered by it.
Now I don’t think Jordan meant to come into the whole motivational thing with malicious intent. I really believe he wanted to bring the other non-superstars on those Bulls teams to his levels. He just didn’t have to resort to bullying to do so.
It could’ve been worse: he could’ve been like coach Bob Knight. Fuck that guy…
I second that emotion regarding Bob Knight.