Michael Jordan famously claimed "we'd have to fall asleep" for the Nets to win a single game in the Nets-Bulls playoff series of his "Last Dance" season.
But Jordan’s comment never made its way into the Nets locker room, Kendall Gill revealed on The Habershow podcast with NBC Sports national NBA Insider Tom Haberstroh.
“I wasn’t aware Michael said that,” Gill said. “Well they were napping in Game 1.”
The Nets took the Bulls to overtime in Game 1. They also kept Game 2 close.
“In Game 2, Michael totally changed his demeanor,” Gill said. “I could tell he was playing a lot harder. He was on his teammates a lot more because he realized they were sleeping.”
The Bulls went on to sweep the Nets and win the 1998 NBA championship.
“We were a very good sparring partner,” said Gill, who became a professional boxer after his NBA career ended. “We got them ready for the fight because they thought they were just going to come in there and walk all over us.”
Here are the timestamps for Haberstroh’s interview with Gill, four-time NBA champion Will Perdue and NBC Sports Chicago’s Bulls Insider K.C. Johnson:
21:06 -- How they felt when MJ announced his first retirement
31:40 -- What Jerry Krause would have added to The Last Dance
44:40 -- MJ smoking cigars in the locker room
50:15 -- Playing cards on the plane with MJ
56:51 -- MJ’s insane schedule with the Dream Team
1:06:50 -- MJ crying on the floor after winning the NBA title on Father’s Day
For more on Jordan, listen and subscribe to the trailer of Sports Uncovered’s “I’m Back” episode: