"The Last Dance" documentary gave fans an insight into how that illustrious run of Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls looked up close and personal. Anyone with any relation to basketball watched it, but it wasn't only fans that learned and saw some stuff for the first time. Players that actually played in that era also learned a thing or two about their most feared rival.
MJ might be most remembered for his six championships in six Finals appearances, but before he took over the league in the 90s', Michael had to overcome a few bumps in the road. The main obstacle were the notorious Detroit Pistons "Bad Boys."
In three different playoff runs, Detroit would eliminate Chicago and stop the best player in the game from becoming a champion. It was only about beating them. It was the way they did it. Playing rugged, physical, and to a degree, dirty basketball represented the brand of Detroit basketball, and Jordan was the primary victim of it.
It wasn't a secret that Michael hated Laimbbeer, Zeke, and the rest of the Bad Boys. But what they didn't know was that Michael and the Bulls couldn't get them out of their heads, as it was seen in "The Last Dance" documentary. John Salley, who was a vital part of that Pistons team, feels that information could have helped them continue beating the Bulls and stopping MJ from becoming the champion he is.
"There was things going on that I didn't know. I found this out when I was watching Michael Jordan's "The Last Dance." If we knew we were in their head as much as we were in their head, you would never have heard of Michael Jordan. We would have run that into the ground."
John Salley, The Rich Eisen Show
It might be a bit presumptuous to think that you could have further stopped Michael Jordan from winning all these championships, but Salley feels knowing they had that kind of mental advantage could have given the Pistons a push and motivation to continue competing with them for more years.
In the end, Michael and the Bulls finally broke through in 1991, sweeping the Bad Boys on the way to their first championship, never looking back on that heated rivalry.