Charles Barkley told us that one of the most important lessons Michael Jordan gave NBA teams through The Last Dance was how to make it work.
Through the course of the documentary, it was laid bare to viewers how Jordan did not see eye to eye with the Bulls management. He had disputes with GM Jerry Krause and owner Jerry Reinsdorf all the time. Jordan played for the Bulls out of love for the city, not the franchise.
This is not to say that Krause and Reinsdorf did not do a great job. But it was clear that there was a huge difference of opinion between them and their franchise star. If it weren’t for Jordan demanding that they draft Scottie Pippen, for example, the franchise would have taken a different course entirely.
The Bulls are the most renowned NBA team in the world even today – 23 years after their last championship. That’s the indelible impact Jordan left on the basketball landscape.
Charles Barkley explains how Michael Jordan made it work and showed that in The Last Dance
While being a guest on Frank Thomas’s first ‘Hanging With Hurt’ podcast, Barkley said:
“The thing that’s really funny. You know Frank, you have heard this before. And first of all, everybody’s heard this ‘Keep all the bad stuff in the locker room’.”
“I said ‘listen, guys, this is why they say keep everything in the locker room’ because you saw those guys didn’t like each other. The players didn’t like each other. The coach and the general manager hated each other, he hated a couple of players.”
“And I said, ‘you know what’s scary about that. Those are the guys that won 6 championships. Can you imagine the bullsh*t that goes on in a losing team in the NBA’?
“That’s why whatever happens in the locker room stays in the locker room. And that is the reason why. Because there’s so much crap that goes on in this business.”