Cover Image for Michael Jordan, who lost $1.2 million golfing, wouldn’t let Magic Johnson sleep until he beat him at poker

Michael Jordan, who lost $1.2 million golfing, wouldn’t let Magic Johnson sleep until he beat him at poker

Samir Mehdi
|Tue Sep 20 2022

Michael Jordan isn’t well known for winning every single time and he certainly wasn’t ready to accept defeat against Magic Johnson.

By the time the 1992 Summer Olympics had rolled around, Michael Jordan was at the apex of the basketball world. Coming off a second straight NBA title, his services were called upon to form the first ever men’s basketball squad that comprised of NBA players to represent the United States of America.

Here, the ‘Dream Team’ would be born. Guys like Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Charles Barkley, and Scottie Pippen, amongst others, were all recruited to regain Olympic glory. One man who stood highest among them was none other than Michael Jordan.

Of course, while this was a serious matter given the country’s Olympic pride was at stake, it was easy to let loose. A number of documentaries of that 1992 team have shown just how much fun they had with one another all while being incredibly competitive.

The two things that the guys were competitive about were basketball and gambling.

Also read: Michael Jordan, who was underpaid in Chicago, revealed his $1 million signing bonus was a lie

Michael Jordan wouldn’t let Magic Johnson sleep until he beat him.

There isn’t a shortage of Michael Jordan gambling stories out there on the interwebs. It feels like every single on them boils down to just how competitive and maniacal ‘His Airness’ was. After all, you don’t go for 2 three-peats if you don’t have that drive within you.

One such moment was when he was playing poker with Magic Johnson at late hours of the night during that ’92 summer. According to Magic, MJ wouldn’t let him sleep well past 4am because the Lakers legend kept beating him and Jordan wanted to win his money back.

What makes this story even more hilarious is the fact that Scottie Pippen and Charles Barkley fell asleep at the 4am mark but both the MJs kept going till 6am.

It wouldn’t be a Michael Jordan story however if golf wasn’t somehow involved. After sleeping at 6am, he would wake up at 8am to go golf. Well, at least he didn’t end up losing $1.2 million like he did that one time.

Also read: A Michael Jordan quote that Daniel Ricciardo applies in every sphere of his life

About the author
Samir Mehdi

Samir Mehdi

Covering everything from Wilt Chamberlain's offensive goaltending games in 1962 to Ja Morant's points in the paint absurdity in 2022.

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