By now, everyone is familiar with the hearty laugh that Michael Jordan had at the expense of Gary Payton when discussing the 1996 NBA Finals on The Last Dance. It went viral, and became a classic addition to everyone’s already illustrious list of Jordan memes. Gary Payton, however, was fuming when he found out like the rest of us.
“Oh you know I was hot! I was thinking about calling him at the time!” Payton told The Opinionated Podcast. “But you know what, that’s what I expect out of Mike, because I would have said the same thing. I’m not going to admit to nothing, I’m not going to admit to someone that D’d me up. I will always tell you at any time in my career, nobody gave me problems but one person and that’s John Stockton to me. So you know that is just the way the game goes.”
Given the anti-Jordan riot led by Horace Grant, it’s actually refreshing to hear a rival/peer of Jordan not be sensitive and express an ounce of contrition when it comes to The Last Dance.