Over the last five weeks, the way I’ve look at my childhood in regards to sports has really changed. Baseball and basketball were my favorite sports growing up and I was always drawn to Michael Jordan. Some might find that odd considering I was and always have been a Detroit Pistons fan. I respected his competitiveness and and intensity. During these last five weeks, I took a lot of notes and had a lot of different thoughts. Instead of writing a long drawn out article about the series, I decided write down five bullet points from each that captured my emotions and thoughts. Here I my takeaways from The Last Dance.
Episodes 1 and 2
1. Michael Jordan is the most cutthroat athlete of all time. He didn’t care who he had to beat to win.
2. Scottie Pippen was grossly underpaid. I am glad the Houston Rockets and Portland Trailblazers had enough respect for him to pay him in the last run of his career.
3. Jerry Krause is the Worst Greatest General Manager of All Time. He made some good decisions, but they don’t outweigh the attitude he had.
4. Pippen and Jordan harassed Krause relentlessly for trying to be one of the boys. Krause wanted as much credit as the players got, but at the end of the day it’s the players on the court that are doing the job.
5. MJ was about defying the odds no matter the obstacles put in front of him.
Episodes 3 and 4
1. Krause screwed over Collins than eventually screwed over his replacement.(Two great coaches mind you) I think Collins deserves more recognition for bringing out Michael’s intensity and competitiveness.
2. Could you imagine if a team targeted Lebron like the Pistons did Jordan? There is no way you would ever get away with what the Bad Boys got a way with.
3. Dennis Rodman has one of the greatest defensive basketball minds ever. He might be out there but you cannot deny his hustle and toughness when it came to being a defensive player.
4. Phil Jackson doesn’t get the credit he deserves for being a good basketball player prior to the NBA. His NBA career was not memorable but he has one of the greatest basketball minds ever.
5. Michael Jordan still has no love loss towards Isiah Thomas and I don’t think that will ever change.
Episodes 5 and 6
1. Kobe Bryant admired and love Michael Jordan. He credits him and never tried to make comparisons. They had a very special relationship and it showed with MJ spoke at his funeral.
2. Can you imagine what the shoe industry would look like if MJ would have went with Adidas or Converse? Nike might not have survived if MJ wouldn’t have came on board.
3. You cannot solely blame MJ for Isiah not being on the 92 Dream Team. Multiple had issues with him. The way the Bad Boys played against everyone had a lot to do with it.
4. I applaud MJ for standing up for himself and his image. No one should be forced to divulge their private beliefs whether it be political or religious. He also shouldn’t have had to divulge what he did on his private time if it wasn’t illegal.
5. MJ commanded respect from everyone regardless of who they were. Watch out if you tried crossing him. If you did cross him, you more than likely paid for it.
Episodes 7 and 8
1. Krause said there were no backstabbers on the team when he was the biggest backstabber of them all.
2. The loss of his father weighed heavily on him and it motivated him to try and pursue his dream of playing baseball.
3. The news media proved how irresponsible they were when they started covering James Jordan’s death. There was no research, no facts, and no evidence. They also treated MJ pretty badly when he wasn’t doing what they wanted him to do. Sound familiar?
4. Michael Jordan brought out the best in everyone, including guys you have never even heard of. They may have not liked him at the time, but they’re still remembered all these years later.
5. I loved how MJ always kept people guessing as to what he was going to do next.
Episodes 9 and 10
1. Even though Michael Jordan and Reggie Miller had their fair share of fights, I love the fact that Miller still respects him. I also love that Miller was not afraid of MJ like so many were.
2. I love how Michael created personal rivalries in his head to fuel his motivation. Sometimes they were make believe which makes it even more insane.
3. Do you think the pizza place in Utah purposely did something to MJ’s pizza that caused him to get sick? Makes you wonder with how shady people were being in the pizza place.
4. Steve Kerr is essentially an American success story. He wasn’t sought after, he wasn’t a superstar and he was often times overlooked. He eventually became a successful broadcaster and coach.
5. The final shot by Michael Jordan in a Bulls uniform is in the Top 5 of most iconic shots in NBA history. The impact, significance and outcome has been felt
1. I feel like Toni Kokuc was not respected what so ever by anyone when he should have been. I feel like Krause is responsible for that because he paid him more than he did Scottie Pippen.
2. I loved how MJ invited players from all across the league to play in pick up games while he was filming Space Jam. It was the ultimate strategy to scout some of the best players in the league.
3. Should the Orlando Magic really get credit for beating the Bulls in 95 given the circumstances?
4. Does anyone actually think David Stern suspended Michael Jordan? I personally think he he was heartbroken over his dad’s death and tired from leading a team from the moment he arrived in the league.
5. The 1992 Dream Team is greatest basketball team ever assembled.
The Last Dance documentary is something that will be talked about for a long time. Some people loved it and others hated it. It really depends on how you feel about Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls. What did you takeaway from the documentary? What did you love? What did you hate? I would love to hear your thoughts on this amazing documentary.