Michael Jordan one-upped archrivals Detroit Pistons in a most singular manner yesterday and no one batted an eye or realized how.
The Pistons were by far the Bulls legend’s bitterest rivals during his playing days. After being dumped out of the playoffs by them for 3 straight years, Jordan first beat them in 1991. The loss sent the Pistons spiralling down the league rankings and signaled the arrival of a new boss in town.
It took a humongous effort for Jordan to get past the Pistons. They threw a variety of curveballs at him on defense. Coach Chuck Daly employed a set of Jordan Rules which involved roughing him up. They would throw hard double teams at MJ and force him to pass the ball out.
Despite the emergence of these rules, Jordan has the highest average for any player against Detroit in the playoffs. MJ is good for an average of 30 points, 6.7 rebounds and 6.1 assists per game through 22 games.
The Jumpman logo (Michael Jordan) is now on Detroit’s away jerseys
The Pistons wore their grey jerseys for the first time this season in their 10-point loss to Milwaukee 2 nights back. The presence of the Jumpman logo on their jersey is the ultimate win Jordan could have over them. Given how much he hates Isiah Thomas and co for roughing him up, this is just ‘retribution’.
Jordan/bulls & the Detroit pistons had a big rivalry & hated each other in the late 80s/early 90s. Its been 30 yrs since they last played but throughout the years members of those teams still say negative things about each other. now pistons have a jersey with MJ’s logo on it
— KF (@REPPIN_DA_WINDY) January 3, 2021
It goes without saying that the Pistons served as a stepping stoner for Jordan to let his talents known to the world. He forged an international identity after he beat Isiah, and then Magic Johnson in the 1991 Finals. It was the beginning of the most dominant era in basketball other than the 60s Celtics.