“The Last Dance” documentary seemed to step on quite a few toes with it’s release these past few weeks. Scottie Pippen, Horace Grant, and even Kendrick Perkins went on record as either accusing Jordan of breaking the “code,” calling him a liar, or calling him a snitch.
And now, Bulls reporter Sam Smith recently indicated a lack of honest storytelling in at least some of the documentary. Towards the final moments, for example, Jordan said he wanted to return for a seventh title run in 1998, but was turned down by the Bulls who apparently chose to start a rebuild instead.
Smith claimed that recollection was a complete and total lie:
“That was a complete and blatant lie by Michael,” Smith said of Jordan wanting to return for the 1998-99 season. “There were several things in the documentary that I saw, I would know, that he made up or he lied about. They weren’t major things, but it was like when a TV movie comes on and they say, ‘this is based on a true story.’ That’s what that was. It was based on a true story.”
“To come back in ’98 and do what he did and basically walk away when he didn’t have to, and then to pretend that he was the one that wanted to play and they forced him out? Who ever forces Michael Jordan out to do anything? Anyway, such a blatant lie, but hey, that’s part of the mystique of Michael Jordan.”
Chicago Bulls reporter Sam Smith says Michael Jordan lied about a few things in The Last Dance
— NBA Central (@TheNBACentral) May 22, 2020
The “bad pizza” story told in connection to the flu game was also, allegedly, made up.
“The pizza thing — the poison — that was complete nonsense,” Smith said. “There were a couple of other things like that I won’t go into. They weren’t major, but the thing at the end [about Jordan wanting to return for the 1998-99 season] was a complete, blatant lie. I know what happened.”
So, what’s the truth here? Besides what was said in that short quote, Smith didn’t elaborate. If he was a different account of events, he chose to keep them to himself.
But with these types of things, there are always two sides to the story. Whether this is a case of lying, or just one side not having the full story, it seems that not everything in “The Last Dance” is the way everyone would tell it.
What you chose to believe is for you to decide.