Isiah Thomas was surprised when Michael Jordan called him an a**hole during episodes 3 & 4 of The Last Dance on ESPN. Thomas and other members of the Detroit Pistons “Bad Boys” walked off the court without congratulating the Bulls after sweeping them in the 1991 Eastern Conference Finals.
However, Thomas became a national trending topic this week because of it. On Sunday’s episodes, Jordan refused to watch a video of Isiah explaining his perspective.
“You can show me anything you want,” said Jordan. “There’s no way you’re not going to convince me he wasn’t an asshole.”
Isiah Thomas had a retort to the direct comment on the statement from His Airness.
“I was definitely surprised,” Isiah said to CBS Sports. “Because we’ve been in each other’s presence before, and I’ve never gotten that type of reaction from him. We were even at dinner a couple times and he was always pleasant. Always good to my kids. Always good to my son. He even gave my son a pair of gym shoes.
“The competition that we all had on the floor, I truly just thought it was on the floor.”
But it wasn’t for MJ.
Jordan is famous for his golf and basketball grudges, however, this was the first time the rawness of the hurt was exposed. It is clear that Jordan is not feeling Thomas at all.
The Feeling Is Not Mutual
However, does Isiah Thomas like Michael Jordan? Apparently, the answer is yes.
“I don’t have anything against him. I definitely admire him as a basketball player,” Thomas says. ” Like I said … I haven’t had an interaction with him that’s been unkind.
“They seem to like all the guys that they beat,” he said with a long laugh.
Jordan’s greatness often overshadows the other generations of great basketball players. However, they all needed each other as a measuring stick to be considered great.
“When you put Jordan and his basketball team in the ’80s, they weren’t a very successful team,” he says. “They just weren’t. When you talk about Jordan and his team dominating, they dominated the ’90s. But when you put him with those Lakers teams and those Pistons teams and those Celtics teams, they all beat him. They just did.
“What separated Jordan from all of us was he was the first one to three-peat. But he didn’t three-peat against Magic, Larry and Dr. J.”
The Last Dance returns with episodes 5 & 6 on Sunday.