When Michael Jordan returned to the NBA in 1995, it was a huge shock for everybody. He decided to retire for the first time after winning his first three-peat in 1993, trying to pursue a baseball career.
Almost by accident, MJ found himself trying to make a surprising comeback in 1995, with the Bulls excited to have him back just in time for the playoffs. Once the rumors started circling, everybody had something to say, with some celebrating the possible comeback of Jordan, while others weren't that happy about His Airness leaving the minor leagues for the NBA.
Basketball Mecca recently shared rare footage of several players and Mike's old head coach reacting to these rumors.
"I really don't know, but my heart says he's gonna come back and play," said Phil Jackson.
"I know the answer, you guys don't. You all gotta wait and see," Charles Barkley told reporters.
"It's like running a bike, he'll never forget it. And he's gonna come back and still be the man, there's no doubt," Penny Hardaway claimed.
"I hope he comes back. It'll be nice for the league, and that's all I'm gonna say," Reggie Miller stated."
Julius Erving, who always felt he was better than MJ, said that he couldn't see Michael Jordan returning to the NBA since he was 'free' as a baseball player.
"Michael is not coming back to play basketball. If he's gonna come back, he's gonna give up the freedom that he enjoys right now. People search their whole life for freedom and security, and independence. How is he gonna come back to a game where there are rules, regulations, and curfews and prostitute the game of basketball by coming back for 15 games and the playoffs? I just don't see it."
Mecca sparked a big debate when they said Erving might be hating on Jordan with his words. Some fans agreed with that, pointing out that he throws shade at the new generation, and it looked like he was doing the same with Jordan. Others said that it was a reach and nothing else.
You reaching if this was the off-season or he mentioned Michael's credibility as it related to the game I could see your point but nah
Was Dr. J or MJ still a debate in 95?
Dr J was doing to Mike what Mike does to Lebron
Man you seriously reaching on this.🤦🏾🤦🏾🤦🏾
Your watching the rebirth of the Doctor in Milwaukee.
MJ had gambling issues. Great player but some luggage.
Simply sounded like Dr. J was happy that he wasn’t apart of the rat race anymore. Most people aren’t set for life at 30, why give that up. I think by 93 the MJ or Doc argument was over anyway
Before I read the caption I felt the same way, Dr. J was hating lowkey
Jealousy for sure. Dr J said a few sideways things about Jordan. He didn’t like how MJ’s game we eclipsed his own.
You’re reading too much into it. As great as Dr J was, Jordan and even Magic had already surpassed him in accomplishments at this point.
Class??? He be hating on the young n*ggas from this game rn just like any other old head 😂😂
He always seemed to have some lowkey hate of Jordan. Drexler too.
Dr. J has always hated on Mj he's had a long history of trying to discredit him all the way up to his first take appear a few years back.
Dr. was wrong and salty
i don’t think dr j was scared i think he genuinely thought jordan would want to relax. plus the rules changing would piss me off so much too
The old generation saying bad things about the players that came after them isn't new. We've seen this for a long time now, and Julius has even criticized players from this era. Last year, he blasted LeBron James for creating the superteam trending in the league. More recently, he picked the King as the GOAT over MJ.
He never minced words to talk about other players and not even MJ was saved from that. In the end, Jordan did return for 15 games and the playoffs. Penny Hardaway and Shaquille O'Neal took him out in the second round, but that elimination only fueled him. In 1996, Jordan would win his fourth title, starting another three-peat for the Bulls. He might have lost his freedom, but it was worth it if he won three more championships.