The Bears announced on Friday afternoon that former All-Pro safety Roosevelt "Rosey" Taylor passed away. Taylor was 82.
Today we lost a Bears great with the passing of Roosevelt Taylor.— Chicago Bears (@ChicagoBears) May 29, 2020
Our thoughts are with Rosey's family and loved ones.
A two-time Pro Bowl safety with the team in the 1960s, he spent the first nine seasons of his NFL career with the Bears from 1961-1969, starting every game. He appeared in 118 games, with 108 starts and 23 interceptions.
Taylor was named first-team All-Pro in 1963 and voted to the Pro Bowl after a season that saw him have a career-best nine interceptions. In the recently published "Chicago Bears Centennial Scrapbook, Taylor was listed as the 56th best Bears player of all-time. He also played for the San Francisco 49ers and Washington.
Before Michael Jordan rejoined the Bulls, he was a Warrior for 48 hours. Figuratively, of course.
No, Jordan didn’t officially sign (or even consider the notion) with the Warriors during the MLB strike that punctuated his first retirement amid the 1994-95 NBA season. But he did secretly practice with the Dubs multiple times whilst retired — and, with rare purpose, dominated multiple All-Stars in midseason condition.
That story was unearthed on NBC Sports’ “Sports Uncovered” podcast. Some of the people behind the production of the podcast, NBC Sports Chicago’s K.C. Johnson, Ryan McGuffey and Tony Gill, joined Jason Goff on the most recent episode of the Bulls Talk Podcast to discuss the behind-the-scenes machinations behind its creation.
McGuffey called the secret Jordan-Warriors practice runs the “golden uncovered nugget” of the podcast. And it came about rather serendipitously, in a chance interview with Tim Hardaway.
“The Tim Hardaway interview kind of fell in our lap. He was in our office one day and it was like, ‘Hey, do you want Tim Hardaway?’ And I was like, ‘Yeah!’” McGuffey said. “I mean, he was an All-Star. I don’t know if it’ll give us anything, I don’t know if it’ll lead to anything.
“Sometimes the interviews you don’t plan for are the ones that become a stone that you turn over and you’re like ‘What is this?’ And Tim Hardaway made a comment, I asked about the Berto Center practices and whether or not he understood what was going on here in Chicago. And he said, ‘I’m gonna get in trouble for saying this.’ ... When a guy says that, you know you got something."
They did, indeed. From there, on recommendation from Hardaway, the crew got in touch with Rod Higgins, then an assistant coach with the Warriors, now the Atlanta Hawks' VP of basketball operations. As detailed in the podcast, it was through a connection with Higgins that Jordan was even allowed to participate in the practices in the first place.
McGuffey and company entered their sit-down with Higgins ready to pry, equipped with volumes of follow-up questions and previously-researched points. But Higgins was ready to share.
“We reached out, found Higgins with the Hawks and reached out to them and told them exactly why we wanted to do the interview. We said this is the story, here’s what’s been said and can you validate?" McGuffey said. "And he didn’t validate it, he didn’t double down, he tripled down and gave us more facts, more details.”
You can hear those details by listening to the Sports Uncovered podcast here, via the embedded player below or wherever you get your podcasts.