Fair warning: This will be heartbreaking and gut-wrenching for Knicks fans.
Anyone who loves sports knows that The Last Dance came at the perfect time since people are stuck at home because of the coronavirus and sports are in a drought. So far, the first four episodes have shown us the rise of Michael Jordan and the cast of characters that helped secure those 6 rings like Phil Jackson, Scottie Pippen, and the ever-interesting Dennis Rodman. But soon, as the title of the doc suggests, we’ll get into the 97-98 season and the downfall of the impenetrable Bulls.
ESPN dropped a clip from the upcoming episode of The Last Dance, illustrating how monumental Jordan’s last game at Madison Square Garden was. Players love to treat MSG as their favorite playground, with stars like James Harden and Kobe Bryant both scored 61 points. So it was only right for Jordan to drop 42 with the odds stacked against him. He was an aged 35-year-old, and he was wearing 14-year-old sneakers that didn’t fit.
Yup, you read that correctly. But as the man with the most successful signature sneakers in history, it was all done on purpose. It was March 8, 1998, and instead of wearing the latest Jordans– which were the 13s at the time–, Jordan rocked a pair of OG Chicago 1s.
“By halftime, my feet are bleeding,” Jordan said in the clip. “But I’m having a good game, I didn’t want to take them off.”
According to Complex and Sole Collector, in his 1998 autobiography, Jordan revealed that his wife found the sneakers when she was cleaning up the house. Jordan originally planned to just rock them during warmups, but he broke so many necks he just had to rock them the entire game.
“I couldn’t take those shoes off fast enough. And when I took the shoes off, my socks were soaked in blood,” Jordan says at the end of the clip.
The Bulls would, of course, beat the Knicks 102-89 and that would prove to not be his last game at the Garden after he decided to come out of retirement to play for the Washington Wizards and donate his salary to the 9/11 relief efforts from 2001 to 2003