Michael Jordan, according to Byron Scott, was disappointed that Scott wasn’t guarding him one day and said he would drop 50 on Anthony Peeler.
Stories chronicling Michael Jordan and his competitive spirit never seem to get old. Instances such as his dedication to table tennis for 6 weeks just to beat a friend of his at the game or the time when he invited Charles Barkley to the golf course prior to the 1993 NBA Finals just to sniff out any weaknesses are what make MJ, MJ.
A couple years ago, Byron Scott took to the Dan Patrick Show to talk about a variety of topics ranging from his stint with the Los Angeles Lakers as a player and then later a coach. However, it’s his story on Michael Jordan and one fateful night on November 20, 1992 that caught quite nearly everybody’s attention.
Entering an era where they didn’t have Magic Johnson nor Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, the Lakers looked to young and rising stars such as Doug Christie, Byron Scott, and Anthony Peeler to help carry them forward. Michael Jordan had no interest in letting these younger Lakers get off scott-free.
Michael Jordan said he’d drop fight on Anthony Peeler and kept his word.
Prior to a game between the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Lakers in November of 1992, Michael Jordan learned that Byron Scott would not be suiting up that night. This was due to an ankle sprain he had sustained a couple days earlier. According to Scott, this is how the conversation went as he relayed it on the Dan Patrick Show in 2016.
“MJ says, ‘B-Scott, what’s going on? I hear you’re not playing tonight?’ I said, ‘No, I sprained my ankle.’ He asked, ‘Who’s guarding me tonight?’ I said: Anthony Peeler. He laughed and simply said, ‘50’. So, I told Anthony Peeler, ‘Listen, Jordan’s probably going for 50 tonight, just don’t piss him off, just be cool. He ended up with 54.”
Byron Scott’s mentality when it came to guarding Michael Jordan was to never piss him off. He claimed to have never tried to trash talk Jordan because if he did, he knew it would light a fire within the 6x champ and would lead to an easy 40 or 50-bomb.
Anthony Peeler wouldn’t have the best of luck when guarding Michael Jordan throughout his career. Following his 54 point explosion in 1992, he would drop 41, 36, 35, 29, and 28 in the remaining 5 game he played against him in his career. It’s safe to say that there’s no better “Welcome to the NBA” moment than getting lit up by the ‘GOAT’.