All the discussion about ‘The Last Dance’ and the 97–98 Chicago Bulls season focused on how it would be the final bow for Michael Jordan.
During 14 years in Chicago – 18 months of which were spent playing baseball – Jordan set the standard for the game’s success. Not only was he revolutionizing the game on the court, but he was making it popular in uncontrolled areas. To top it all off, he was the biggest sneaker salesman.
So good was he even in his mid-30s, that he won his last MVP trophy in 1997–98. This is why it was a shock to the basketball community that he re-hung his shoes. People felt that he would once again cut his braid.
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Michael Jordan himself wanted to keep his Bulls team together for a long time. He tried to have long and hard conversations with Jerry Krause and Jerry Rinsdorff, but to no avail.
Michael Jordan did not mix eyes with Bulls front office
It is now well known that the relationship between Jerry Kruse and Michael Jordan was not very warm. But he worked it out for many years on the basis of sheer good luck – the Scotty Pippen deal. Pippen’s low salary allowed the Bulls to surround Jordan with the likes of Tony Kukoc and Dennis Rodman.
But Krause had decided that the time had come to end the Phil Jackson era, and he wanted to start it with himself. MJ maintained all season long that he would not consider playing for any coach to save the Zen Master. But to no avail, because despite repeated criticism from his franchise player, the Bulls’ front office did not budge.
OTD (99) Michael Jordan retired for the second time and said he was 99.9 percent sure he would not return.
The announcement was made 7 months after winning his last championship after agreeing to end the lockout by the NBA.
4 @ Laugh
– Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) 13 January 2021
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Charles Barclay, Patrick Ewing urged him to retire, but to no avail. In the event of his retirement, Jordan said:
“I’ve talked to Patrick, I’ve talked to Charles, I’ve talked to Carl, I’ve talked to all of them. ‘I’m pretty sure they feel the same. They all wanted me to come back, just in case they won a championship they could say that they went through Chicago and Michael Jordan to win it. That’s the good thing about it. “
“And they will never get a chance to say so. So I was very happy that I played Magic and played Bird when I won my titles. Because I had to go through Boston and LA to some extent. “
Even in the farewell, Jordan could not hesitate to show his competitive edge.