Exclusive – Tim Hardaway On His Heated Matchups With Michael Jordan

NBA.com

Exclusive – Tim Hardaway On His Heated Matchups With Michael Jordan

 

Legendary point guard Tim Hardaway has been in Melbourne, Australia for the past month, as he joined the Team USA squad for their preparations before their FIBA World Cup campaign. The roster spent the best part of a week down under with Hardaway in attendance, before heading to China and eventually opening up their World Cup campaign with a victory over the Czech Republic two nights ago. The five-time All Star was also busy away from the team, as he ran an exclusive basketball camp for the suburban kids of Melbourne.

The “Killa Crossover” camp featured Hardaway along with professional ballers and coaches Liam Platt and Durrell “Nuggett” McDonald, teaching kids between the ages of 8-17 the fundamentals of the game and put them through rigorous drills to improve their overall ability. Hardaway was on hand to answer questions, and provide feedback and advice to the aspiring youngsters.

As the camp concluded, the Olympic Gold Medalist shared his experiences with both playing and coaching in the NBA, which was followed by questions from the campers. After, Hardaway sat down with OpenCourt-Basketball to discuss various aspects of his playing career, one of what was the heated matchups between himself and legendary Chicago Bulls guard Michael Jordan, as he offered some insight into what it was like guarding MJ.

 

“You should be asking Michael Jordan what it was like to guard me!”

 “You know I played against Mike a lot of times I’m from Chicago, so we played a lot of times just pick up basketball games in Chicago, I didn’t like sticking him and he didn’t like sticking me, so it was like if he stuck me I knew I was going to score and if I stuck him I knew he was going to score on me, he was hard to stop, simple as that you do whatever you can, but he was tough, you know he was tough, you tried to stop him but he was a great competitor, a great competitor, the best you can ever want to play with or against.”

 

Hardaway also discussed molding his game after Detroit Pistons legend Isiah Thomas whilst watching his dad compete against him during pickup games in Chicago, as well as the “Run TMC” days with the Don Nelson and the Golden State Warriors.

Despite their fierce matchups, there will always be that mutual respect between Hardaway and Jordan, as both men went on to have hall of fame careers and retire as NBA legends. The Miami Heat have since retired Hardaway’s number 10 jersey and he’s witnessed his son transition into a solid NBA player.

Nowadays, Hardaway is involved with many business ventures and still remains close to the game that made him a household name in the 80s and 90s. It’s always a treat hearing the veterans and legends of our game talk about their past, and where the game is heading moving forward. 

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