ESPN’s “The Last Dance” came to an end on Sunday, and its final source of debate wasn’t much of a surprise.
The show has dominated the conversation ever since it premiered. Each episode brought with it fresh debates and topics for the public which eagerly devoured the morsels.
The final episode was about the breakup of the Chicago Bulls of 1998. Scottie Pippen and Steve Kerr were traded, Dennis Rodman was released and Phil Jackson walked away. In the episode Bulls’ owner says that it would have been suicidal to being back the team’s core and that it was necessary to rebuild the team.
When shown the video of the owner’s explanation, Michael Jordan ha d a few words of hgis own in retaliation. He said, “If you ask all the guys who won in ’98, Steve Kerr, Jud Buechler, blah blah blah, we give you a one-year contract to try for a seventh, you think they would have signed them? Yes, they would have signed them. Would I have signed for one year? Yes, I would have signed for one year. I’d been signing one-year contracts up to that. Would Phil have done it? Yes. Now Pip, you would have had to do some convincing, but if Phil was gonna be there, Dennis was gonna be there, if M.J. was gonna be there, to win our seventh? Pip is not gonna miss out on that.”
The owner didn’t get a chance to respond to MJ in the documentary. So he did the next best thing – explained his point to the media. He said, “I was not pleased. How’s that? He knew better. Michael and I had some private conversations at that time that I won’t go into detail on ever. But there’s no question in my mind that Michael’s feeling at the time was we could not put together a championship team the next year.”