Gary Payton’s Epic Story Of Michael Jordan Shutting Down His Trash Talking

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Gary Payton’s Epic Story Of Michael Jordan Shutting Down His Trash Talking


Gary Payton was one of the best point guards to ever play the game. Payton is a one-time NBA champion, a nine-time All-Star, and a two-time All-NBA first teamer. He also made the NBA All-Defense First Team in 9 consecutive seasons and won the Defensive Player of the Year award in 1996. Because of his elite and pesky defense, he earned himself a special nickname – ‘The Glove’. On top of that, Payton was one of the NBA’s biggest trash talkers, who, at times, wouldn’t shut up for one second of a game.

But like many other stars of the 90s, his career was overshadowed by Michael Jordan. For an article inThe Players’ Tribune‘, Payton now revealed that he made the same mistake many players did before him and after – trash talking Michael Jordan.

In Payton’s case, it also was the first time he faced Jordan, when he was a rookie. The Glove scored 19 points during a preseason game between the Sonics and Bulls, with Jordan watching from the bench. Payton ran by the bench to talk trash to Jordan and the other Bulls and stared them down, feeling like he was on top of the world.

Then, before their first regular season game against each other, Jordan refused to shake Payton’s hand and said: “leave the f**king rookie to me”.


He turns to B.J. and he says, “Leave the f*cking rookie to me,” so everyone can hear it.

Sh*t, O.K., I’m thinking.Well f*ck it then. Bring it on.

The game gets going. I’m checking Michael, and I see Phil Jackson start calling plays — four, five, six times in a row, he’s calling plays for Michael. And Michael is scoring four, five, six times in a row. Michael is on a different level than I knew there was.

In a matter of minutes, I’m in foul trouble. K.C. benches me. I didn’t really go back in the game much more after that. I remember I finished with no points — played about seven or eight minutes. MJ ended up going for 33.

But that wasn’t the end of it. Near the end of the game, I’m sitting on the bench, and MJ comes over to our bench — comes right up to me while the game is still going on. Coach is standing right there. Everyone on the bench is staring at him. Looks right at me.

“That sh*t you talking in preseason?” The wild thing is, MJ isn’t even mad or nothing. He’s chewing his f**cking gum. “This is the real sh*t right here. Welcome to the NBA, little fella.” The Bulls won the title that season, and then five more before he was done.


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