Michael Jordan let’s it be known that he paid Tim Grover to not just train him, but to keep him exclusive and not train anyone else.
Michael Jordan entered the NBA from UNC as a relatively scrawny 6’6 kid who relied on his athleticism to get easy buckets. His game down-low in the post was not as strong as it was later in his career as Jordan in the 80s had not yet perfected things like the fadeaway out of the post and the bully-ball into an easy layup.
However, employing the services of now legendary trainer Tim Grover seems to have paid off for the 6x champ as it became very clear that his training regime had taken a massive turn following the hiring of Grover. Mainly his arms and overall upper body looked bigger and more muscular and this aspect was touched upon in last year’s ‘The Last Dance’.
In the 15 years that Tim Grover and Michael Jordan would be connected with one another, Jordan claims to have kept the former exclusive to himself and only ever once broke this rule.
Kobe Bryant was an exception to Michael Jordan when it came to Tim Grover.
In a recent edition of Undisputed, Tim Grover opened up about his ensuing relationship with Kobe Bryant following the retirement of his greatest client. “In 2007, Kobe actually reached out to Michael and said, ‘Listen, I’m having a lot of issues with my knees, do you have any recommendations?’ Michael said, “This is not what I do, but since I’m not using Grover anymore, why don’t you give him a call?”
“It was funny because when Michael was playing, he would always say, ‘Listen, I don’t pay Grover to train me. I pay him to not train anyone else.’”
Having trained perhaps the two most competitive players in the history of the league, Tim Grove understood how both approached the game from a training standpoint. He claims that in the 5 years he trained Kobe Bryant, he never knew how to stop. Kobe reportedly always wanted more in terms of working out and perfecting his craft.
According to Grover, Michael Jordan worked smarter as opposed to Kobe working harder. Jordan understood the limitations of his body and responded to them by not forcing himself to wake up at odd hours or working himself past a certain limit.
Tim Grover must be doing something right as the year he started working out with Kobe was the same year the Lakers would go to the Finals for the first time for nearly half of a decade and continue to do so the next two years after that.