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#pounditMonday, August 2, 2021

Reporter: Michael Jordan would not let Horace Grant eat after bad games

Those who have watched “The Last Dance” documentary about the 1997-1998 Chicago Bulls know that tension exists between Michael Jordan and Horace Grant. But the issues between the players apparently goes far beyond what many realized.

Sam Smith, who covered the Bulls as a reporter and wrote the book “The Jordan Rules,” said in a recent podcast interview that Jordan’s treatment of Grant was downright mean.

Smith appeared on KNBR’s Tolbert, Krueger and Brooks Podcast and said he was told Jordan would deprive Grant of food.

“Players would come to me over the years and said, ‘You know what he did? He took Horace [Grant’s] food away on the plane because Horace had a bad game,’” Smith told the hosts. “[Michael] told the stewardesses ‘Don’t feed him, he doesn’t deserve to eat.’

“They would tell me stuff like that and they they’d say ‘Why don’t you write this?’ And I would say ‘Well I can’t write it unless you say it.’ I don’t do ‘league sources.’ You can’t do that kind of stuff on these kind of things. ‘If you want to be quoted I’ve got no problem with that.’ ‘No, no, no we can’t say that about Michael Jordan.’”

Smith’s book came up in the documentary. Jordan said in an interview aired in the documentary that he believed Grant was the source behind Smith’s stories. Grant disputed that in a podcast interview with “Pardon My Take” and said several Bulls players were quoted in the book.

According to Grant, who played from 1987-2004, Jordan never wanted him. Grant told Pardon My Take that Jordan wanted the Bulls to draft someone else, but team owner Jerry Reinsdorf stood up for others in the organization who wanted to take Grant, whom the Bulls selected No. 10 overall in 1987. Grant played the first seven seasons of his career with the Bulls before moving on to Orlando. He made his only All-Star team in his final season with Chicago.

This type of story has not been aired in the documentary, but it is exactly the type of story Jordan feared being made public. Maybe there are two sides of the story and Jordan would say he was messing around. But based on Smith’s telling of it, that really makes MJ look bad.

H/T CBS Sports


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