There's no much left to say about Michael Jordan's competitiveness. The Chicago Bulls legend had that fire that made him the greatest player of all time. He didn't back down to any challenge, constantly pushing himself to reach the next level.
Jordan was well aware of his quality and never hesitated to show them off. In fact, when he knew his rival couldn't do anything against him, MJ took advantage of that.
Back in 2016, former Los Angeles Lakers player and coach Byron Scott told a story when Jordan learned he wouldn't be guarded by Scott, predicting how many points he would drop that night. Instead of Byron, Anthony Peeler would take the not-so-easy responsibility of guarding one of the best scorers of all time.
Talking on The Dan Patrick Show, Scott recalled:
“You guys remember Anthony Peeler? Out of Missouri. So we got the Chicago Bulls coming to town and, unfortunately, I got a sprained ankle. I enjoyed guarding Mike because he was—the one thing I did with Mike is I never got him pissed off. He makes a shot, you say, ‘Good shot, Mike!’ You don’t talk trash to him so that he can go off for 60. You try to kill him with kindness. You don’t talk trash to him.”
“So they’re getting off the bus, we’re done with shootaround, and we’re walking out and MJ says, ‘B Scott, what’s going on?’ I said, ‘What’s up, MJ?’ He said, ‘Man, I hear that you’re not playing tonight.’ I said, ‘No, I sprained my ankle.’ He said, ‘Who’s guarding me?’ I said, ‘Anthony Peeler.’ He’s like, ‘Oh. 50.’ [laughs] So I told Anthony Peeler, ‘Listen, MJ is probably going to go for about 50 tonight on you. So just don’t piss him off. Just be cool.’ He ended up with 54.”
It looks like Peeler didn't hear Scott's advice, or MJ was simply taking advantage of not facing his primary defender on the court. Either way, His Airness went off, letting Peeler know he had nothing against No. 23.
Just like this, Jordan dominated more rivals this way, taking things personally and unleashing all his power against whoever dared to try him. There are many incredible stories about MJ, and this is one of the best.