‘No One Knows the Pressure Michael Jordan Is Under’: Former Chicago Bulls Teammate Makes a Major Revelation

Published 12/29/2020, 4:26 PM EST
Chicago Bulls All-Star forward # 23 Michael Jordan file photos. (Photo by Tom Berg/WireImage)


Michael Jordan is one of the greatest players the NBA has ever seen. He was one of the most competitive players on the court besides standing out as the most talented, as he always carried the hunger to win.

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Four-time NBA champion and former Detroit Pistons player John Salley recently had an interview with Vlad TV. In one part of the interview, Salley spoke about why was MJ so intense on the floor.

He said, “I learned this about Michael. No one knows the pressure Michael Jordan is under. Because we watch him on court and you go ‘Ahh’ but you don’t know the pressure he is under.”

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“The media, trying to be a family man saving the NBA from destruction, making it a worldwide business. It was already on, but Michael made it what it is. When you’re a messiah, no one knows the pressure of the messiah. The messiah is there to save,” Salley mentioned.

“People talk about how intense he is. Of Course he is going to be that intense on court and practice. Because that’s the only place where he can release that energy. He didn’t know about yoga, deep breathing, martial arts, he didn’t find all those other things. Whatever was bothering him was coming out in practice, ” he further added.

“I had no idea that we as the Pistons if we knew were on Michael’s mind that much they would have never won a championship.”

The rivalry between the Bad Boy Pistons and Michael Jordan

The rivalry between Isiah Thomas‘ Detroit Pistons and MJ’s Chicago Bulls was one of the most intense matchups the NBA has ever seen. In fact, Detroit was the biggest threat to the Bulls’ early reign.

The 80s Pistons used to defeat every opponent in a pretty physical battle. The rivalry between the Bulls and Pistons intensified when they met in the 1988 playoffs’ Eastern Conference semi-finals. Ahead of the postseason, Jordan was named the MVP and the Defensive Player of the Year that year, and the Bulls were favorites to win it all.

The Bad Boy Pistons had a point to prove and despite MJ’s efforts, the Pistons were too physical and far more superior to the Bulls. Detroit ultimately won the 1988 series in five games.

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They once again faced off in the 1989 Eastern Conference finals. The Pistons had the best record in the season with 63 victories and were the favorites once again.

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Jordan and the Bulls were determined to pull off an upset, and it looked like they would when they managed to pull up a 2-1 lead in the series. But the Pistons had other ideas as they defeated the Bulls in three straight games to win the tie and they clamped down on the Bulls with the ‘Jordan Rules‘.

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The Bulls-Pistons rivalry continued in 1990 as well. The Bulls were very close to beating the Pistons, but a superior performance by the Pistons in Game 7 saw them defeat the Bulls in the third consecutive series. The Pistons also won two consecutive titles in 1989 and 1990.

After several attempts, the Bulls finally got their sweet revenge in 1991 when the Pistons were nowhere near their best. They defeated the Pistons in a sweep in the playoffs and went on to win their first title. The rest as we know, is history!

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Aditya Mohapatra

1262 articles

Aditya Mohapatra is a sports enthusiast who primarily covers the NBA for EssentiallySports. Having graduated in Mass Communication, he has prior experience in writing for ABP News, and has been writing for EssentiallySports since November 2020. This die-hard Los Angeles Lakers fan feels that LeBron James is the best thing to have ever happened to the NBA, and will hold a healthy debate with anyone suggesting otherwise.

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