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Reggie Miller was slow to come around on Last Dance interview: ‘It was too much pain’

Jason Hehir, the director of "The Last Dance," discusses the notion that Michael Jordan was involved in the editing process of the documentary.

Reggie Miller, whose Pacers took the Bulls to the limit in 1998, gave some great interviews during The Last Dance. He was honest — “I respected him so much, but he probably thought I was just some mouthy, skinny kid” — and funny and came off as one of the winners from the documentary.

He also didn’t want to be interviewed for it, not at first.

Jason Hehir, the director “The Last Dance,” went on the “Jalen & Jacoby Aftershow” on ESPN after the documentary ended Sunday and talked about Miller’s reluctance to do the interview, at which point former Pacers’ teammate Jalen Rose said he had to help convince Miller to do it (hat tip CBS Sports).

“It took us a while to get Reggie. We called and called and called and emailed and called and called and called, and finally, he agreed to sit down. I don’t know if he just wasn’t getting those calls or if he was avoiding them or what. But he gave a great interview...

“I was trying to initially get him to interview for this doc, and he ain’t want to do it,” Rose said. “It was too much pain.”

Coming as close as the Pacers did to beating the Bulls that season — Indiana led in the fourth quarter of Game 7 and it was tied with five minutes to go — has got to sting. As Miller said on camera, he believed the Pacers were the better team that season. If he didn’t want to revisit that scar, it was his right.

The Bulls broke up after that season. Two years later, the Pacers would make it to the Finals but ran into the Shaq/Kobe Lakers. Miller would never get a ring, but would go down as one of the greatest sharpshooters the game had ever seen.

He’s part of a long and storied group of players who Jordan kept from getting a title.