Gary Payton Responds to Michael Jordan Laughing at Him During ‘The Last Dance’ Documentary

Published 03/06/2021, 12:30 AM EST
OAKVILLE, ONTARIO, CANADA – JULY 20: Five-time NBA MVP Michael Jordan smiles after hitting to the seventh green during the RBC Canadian Open’s Mike Weir Charity Classic Pro-Am at Glen Abbey Golf Club on July 20, 2009 in Oakville, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Stan Badz/PGA TOUR)


The Last Dance documentary by Michael Jordan had some of the best NBA stories from the 1980s and 1990s. Along with showing how Jordan became the player he was, the docuseries also provided a lot of memes.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Whether it was Jordan taking everything personally, or his security imitating his shrug, multiples memes emerged from it. One of the most famous ones is the clip where Jordan laughs at Hall of Famer Gary Payton.

He watches a video of Payton’s interview on his iPad and bursts out laughing as Payton talks about slowing down Jordan, a statement the Bulls legend disagrees with.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

During a recent interview, Payton spoke about what he felt when Jordan laughed at him in the docuseries. He said, “He wouldn’t be Michael Jordan if he would have bowed down there. If it was my documentary and they asked me the same thing I would have laughed too and been like ‘no he couldn’t go at me neither.'”

Payton’s point makes sense. Even if Jordan had a tough time dealing with the Glove, he would never admit it in his own documentary.

Gary Payton says Michael Jordan got the best out of him during each matchup

During the 1990s, many NBA legends went ringless because of Jordan. Payton is among those players.

However, he managed to win a ring in 2005, long after Jordan’s retirement. They had numerous intense battles when Payton played for the Seattle SuperSonics, but the only postseason battle they had was in the 1996 NBA Finals.

Michael Johnson #23, shooting guard for the Chicago Bulls prepares to make a shot during a Central Division game in the Eastern Conference of the National Basketball Association (NBA) 1988 – 1989 season at Chicago Stadium, Chicago, United States. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Allsport/Getty Images)

The Bulls overcame the SuperSonics 4-2, with Jordan leading the scoring. But despite him not admitting it, facing Payton was a challenge for Jordan, and his stats agree with it.

He shot just 41% from the field while going up against Payton in the Finals, but an overall team effort helped the Bulls to win.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Jordan had a 14-7 record against Payton, and despite his losing record, Payton enjoyed these matchups. He revealed he played at his best when he was facing Jordan.

Payton said, “Every night I played Michael Jordan, he brought the best out of me. Wish I could have started off on him in the championship and it would have been better.”

Watch This Story

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

This matchup was one of the best to watch for the 90s NBA fans. The defensive stalwart going up against an offensive juggernaut provided fireworks and kept everyone on their toes.

DIVE DEEPER

Zach LaVine Picks Michael Jordan’s Last All-Star Game as One of His Favorite Moments

8 months ago

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

ADVERTISEMENT

Aaron Mathew

1667 articles

Aaron Mathew is a sports analyst at EssentiallySports. A graduate in Mass Media from Xavier’s College, Aaron has been a part of EssentiallySports since May 2020 where he covers both NBA and NCAA basketball news, and has also covered NBA 2K. In the past, Aaron has worked at the Sports Desk of Mumbai Mirror.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT