If we've learned one thing from 'The Last Dance' is that you never talk trash to Michael Jordan. He's the most competitive person to ever live and will literally take everything on a personal level.
So, even if you think he's old, he's going to suit up and demonstrate that he can still kick everybody's butt in the hardwood. Sadly for him, Stephen Jackson had to learn it the hard way when he tried to beat a 51-year old Michael Jordan on a scrimmage during his time with the Charlotte Bobcats:
"We were going through a rough patch. Michael decided to jump in and [bring Charles Oakley] on his team. Stephen Jackson, being Stephen Jackson, started talking trash. Jackson said ‘that was the past, this is now and I will bust your a**.’ Michael got furious, trash-talking and killing him and all of us. [MJ is] 50 or 51. Telling Stephen Jackson ‘how does the leather taste in your mouth’ after every shot. Then it became a 1-on-1. It did not end up well for Stephen Jackson. Michael won. It was incredible. It was good for the team, we snapped out of the losing streak we had," Najera told 'Inside Buzz With Mikey Domagala'.
It seems like Stephen Jackson should've known better than to poke the bear. But hey, that's just what trash-talkers do. Still, Najera acknowledged that even though Jordan was a bit of a bully, he eventually learned how to stay back and let players do their own thing:
"He’s hard on his players. He should be, he set the bar so high. It was tough to play for him. I can’t imagine being a young guy playing for Michael with him on the bench telling you what to do and yelling. You have to block it out and you learn to. Michael has a big presence. I don’t know if it was positive or negative on the players. But Michael learned, he started going to his suite instead of the end of the bench," Najera concluded.
Jordan always led by example and he set a standard for those who came after him. That's why he doesn't let anybody get away with anything, especially if it comes to trash talking.
In fact, Stephen Jackson even admitted once on ESPN that Michael Jordan is the only person that has beaten him on a trash-talking duel. Apparently, Jackson tried to pick on him for being 50+ at the time, saying that he was the past and now it's the future.
Jordan fired back by reminding him of every single one of his accolades but to put the cherry on top of the sundae, he closed his argument by letting him know that he was the one who paid his checks. That's why you don't poke the Goat. Straight savage.