The All-Star Game is all about having fun. Even the great Michael Jordan — whose obsession with winning has made him infamous — took a little breather by putting his joker hat on. His victim was none other than Penny Hardaway.
I like kidding around
In the 1996 All-Star Game, Jordan was the last to be called up in the player introduction. Before him, Orlando Magic’s stellar guard Penny Hardaway was introduced. Jordan took this opportunity to embarrass Hardaway in front of millions of fans by pulling his pants down.
One can see the look of embarrassment and disappointment in Penny’s eyes as he dapped up his fellow All-Stars. Meanwhile, Jordan was laughing out loud on the bench. What made the ordeal funnier was that Jordan tried to pull Hardaway’s pants again as he walked toward him.
Jordan later explained his antics on Hardaway. He’s well aware of his reputation as a no holds barred competitor who’s willing to do anything to win. Jordan also wants to let people know that he’s human, too. And like everyone else, he likes to laugh.
“I like kidding around. I like joking around. I'm at that stage in my life where I want people to see that and understand that about me. I want to enjoy those things and not have to enjoy them behind closed doors,” Jordan said.
He’s a funny guy
Those who see Jordan as a tyrant clearly have not seen his fun-loving personality. The man has a very good sense of humor which he has displayed over the years through countless interviews and TV appearances. As a matter of fact, in 1989, a few years before he started collecting championship rings, Jordan shared the most epic milkman joke.
There are also tons of funny Jordan moments on the Internet. His one-liners are a classic. Sometimes he’s funny without even meaning to. Just recall The Last Dance documentary how he literally took everything personally. But nothing beats his denigration of Charles Barkley on Oprah. From the looks of it, Jordan has a thing for embarrassing people on live TV.
These clips and his epic prank on Hardaway should prove that Jordan isn’t this cold dictator who bullies his teammates around. The reason why he’s so marketable isn’t just due to his basketball skill. The man also knows how to carry himself around. He’s also not afraid to show off his sense of humor.