CHICAGO — There are myriad ways to measure Michael Jordan’s dominance during the prime years of his career, but nothing drives it home quite like the testimony of former players. Jordan was so consistent for so long that every NBA veteran from the 1980s and ’90s has a story to share from on-court encounters with him.
Kevin Garnett, a 15-time All-Star and future Hall of Famer, is no different. Garnett described his favorite Jordan story on Showtime’s “All The Smoke” podcast with former NBA players Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson, diving deep into the time he made the mistake of talking trash to Jordan 24 years ago.
With his Timberwolves teammate Isaiah Rider playing well against Jordan in a 1996 game, Garnett became a little overzealous and started to tell Rider he was “too strong” for Jordan, who did not take the jabs lightly. Rider tried to calm Jordan down and tell him that the rookie Garnett was just overexcited, but the damage was done.
Jordan then went on a tear — scoring every basket, shutting down Rider and Garnett and turning a close game into a blowout.
“I can’t even really describe the next six to seven minutes of play,” Garnett said.
The Bulls shared footage of that game, which was played 24 years ago today, in honor of Garnett’s story. Jordan posted 35 points, six rebounds and seven assists against the Timberwolves.
“KG didn’t understand that we don’t talk to Mike like that,” Rider said in a 2017 interview with Minnesota’s Go 95.3.
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