Former NBA player and a true legend of the game Patrick Ewing made a guest appearance on ‘Dubs Talk’ podcast, touching upon a few interesting topics. The main reason why Ewing unfortunately never won a championship was because of Michael Jordan, the Bulls, and secondly Hakeem when they met in the finals. Ewing’s rivalry with Jordan lasted almost 20 years, and it all started in college in the early 1980s.
Ewing remembers the first time he met Jordan on the campus of UNC at Chapel Hill. At that time, Jordan was already in college while Ewing was one of the top recruits, and for a while, there was a possibility he would join Jordan as a member of the Tar Heels.
He (Jordan) had already committed, but his sister was there, she wanted to see the school. I think they worked it out so that he would be back there when I’m on my visit.Patrick Ewing, via Dubs Talk
Apparently, young Jordan didn’t waste any time and started trash-talking to Ewing after knowing him for only five minutes. Jordan was saying how Ewing can’t even dunk on him despite being such a big guy. That statement immediately prompted Ewing to react, so he picked up a ball and dunked on Jordan even though he was in street clothes.
Everyone who knows Michael knows he is the biggest trash talker. So this is my first time meeting him, and he’s talking so much trash to me. You know, like, ‘You can’t dunk on me, or blah, blah, blah. “I’m in street clothes, he’s in his gym clothes. I’m like, OK. So I get the ball, and I go up, and I dunked on him. I said, now you can shut the blank up.”Patrick Ewing, via Dubs Talk
Whether this story by Ewing is correct or not, that instance in college might be the only time Ewing bested Jordan. Later that year, UNC beat Georgetown, led by Ewing, and in the NBA, Jordan always had the upper hand in his matchups against Ewing and the Knicks. They even became teammates for a brief moment in their careers when they played for the original Dream Team, but their careers in many ways went in different ways in terms of winning. Ewing still to this day remains one of the most under-appreciated players in recent NBA history.