In 1997 Michael Jordan had already amassed a career of incredible highlights and amazing records. He had won 4 NBA titles, awarded as the NBA’s MVP 4 times and named the NBA Finals MVP 4 times. His legacy was already set to be considered one of the greatest basketball players of all times. Up to that point he had many memorable moments. The most notable was the game against the Cavaliers in the NBA Playoffs were he made “The Shot” in 1989. One of the last memorable moments and possibly the biggest of his career came in the 1997 NBA Finals.
On June 11, 1997 the Chicago Bulls took on the Utah Jazz in Salt Lake City, Utah. It was Game 5 of the NBA Finals and the series was tied at 2-2. The day before the game Michael Jordan became severely ill. Jordan had a fever and was not able to keep any food down. He was found in the fetal position by his trainer and was very fatigued. Many who were close to the situation believed there was no way he would play the next day.
Michael Jordan during “The Flu Game” (Gety Images”
When the game started Michael Jordan was visibly weak and pale in color. The Bulls fell to an early 16-point deficit in the second quarter and with Jordan not feeling well were in a hole. At halftime the score was 53-49 in favor of the Jazz. The third quarter found Jordan on the bench trying to rest and looking in even worse shape than he had at the beginning of the game. When the fourth quarter began Jordan was back in the game and scored 15 of the Bulls 23 points in the final quarter of the game. The most dramatic plays of the game came in the final minute. Jordan was able to make a 3-pointer to give the Bulls a 88-85 lead with just 25 seconds remaining in the game. The next play was a dunk by Greg Ostertag of the Jazz which took the Bulls lead to only one point. The Bulls were able to raise the score again with a dunk by Luc Longley. With just a few seconds remaining and the Jazz down by 3 points John Stockton was fouled and was now at the free throw line. He needed to make both free throws for the Jazz to be able to stay in the game. When he missed the first free throw the game was sealed. The Bulls had over come this daunting game and won by a score of 90-88. Michael Jordan then collapsed into Scottie Pippen’s arms, this image would forever be considered the trademark picture for this game. Jordan finished the game with 39 points, 11 rebounds and 4 assists.
Scottie Pippen holding a weak Michael Jordan in the final seconds of “The Flu Game” (Getty Images)
The Bulls would go on to win Game 6 and their 5th NBA Title. It has been reported in later years that he did not have the flu but instead had food poisoning. Regardless of that fact this game was an incredible show of strength and determination for Michael Jordan. Jordan will be remembered long after his days on this earth and this game will be considered one of his best for all future generations who will read about him.
Posted in NBA, sports, Sports History
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The NBA has had an All Star game since 1951. With the greatest of all time having competed in this contest it is no surprise it has been the place for great moments. The greatest NBA All Star moment came in the 1992 game.
The game took place in Orlando, Florida and featured a class of superstars the likes of which will never be seen again. Great players like Michael Jordan, Patrick Ewing, Karl Malone and David Robinson just to name a few. The roster was so stacked that 11 of the 12 players that would make up the 1992 “Dream Team” were on the floor that day.
(Photo: Magic Johnson with the MVP trophy/Getty Images)
The biggest name in the lineup was Magic Johnson. Magic had retired from the game of basketball in November of 1991. This came at the same time he made a shocking announcement that he had contracted HIV. The sports world was devastated by this news.
Magic Johnson had been revered as one of the greatest players of all time. He transformed the point guard position into what it has become today. The tragic news also brought the realization that he would never play again. There was however one thing that everyone forgot about, Magic’s determination and drive.
Magic Johnson came back to basketball after 3 months out of the game to a standing ovation. The stage was set for Magic to steal the show and boy did he. Magic played 29 minutes and scored a total of 25 points in this game for the ages. He battled it out with Michael Jordan who was also a mega star at that time. Magic played with a youthful spirit. You can watch now in 2013 and still feel the excitement and energy that was alive in the Orlando Arena.
Magic Johnson finished the game by going one on one with both Isaiah Thomas and Michael Jordan. He sank a 3 pointer with 14 seconds left on the clock to score the final points of the game. The final 14 seconds were not played. There was no reason the game was already out of reach for the East who lost by a score of 153-113. It was an incredible moment and the right way to end the game, with Magic on top. Magic was awarded the MVP trophy and lauded by all of his peers and the fans in the Arena.
It was to be Magic Johnson’s swan song. However he would end up on the 1992 Olympics Basketball team. Even though his career had more moments that followed that All Star game. His greatest came on that court in Orlando.
Posted in NBA, Sports History
Tagged 1992, 3 point, all star game, arena, award, BASKETBALL, best players, davi robinson, final game, greatest, hall of fame, isaiah thomas, karl malone, legend, line up, magic johnson, michael jordan, moment, mvp, NBA, orena, orland, patrick ewing, shot, stars, trophy, who was in the game
The rookie phenom that is 19 year old Bryce Harper will continue his whirl wind season by going to the All Star Game. Harper was not originally slated to attend the game which takes place this week in Kansas City. Harper will be taking the spot of injured Marlins star Giancarlo Stanton. Harper will be the 3rd youngest player to play in the MLB All Star Game. While Harper will be playing off of the bench the eyes of all of the fans will be on him for sure.
Harper has had a solid start to his MLB career since his debut in April. He is an excellent outfielder fielder with a rocket arm. His offensive play has been very good for his experience level. Harper has a batting average of .283, hit 8 home runs and had 25 RBI’s and scored 43 runs in just 62 games for the 1st place Washington Nationals.
Harper going deep at Fenway Park earlier this season.
Harper came in with a lot of hype and has been living up to it. He has displayed a maturity on and off the field, the later many thought he would be able to do. He has shown a lot of personality and has a charisma that a lot of players don’t have. He has created great moments already in his young career, like when he hit a home run in the historic Fenway Park during his first game on that field. He is in the right spot now to really display his skills in front of a national audience. Harper is a strong contender for Rookie of the Year in the National League.
Harper will probably get at least 1 at bat and play 2 innings or so. Many players have created unforgettable moments in All Star Games. I have a feeling Bryce Harper will have a chance to make one of those moments. When he gets he will more than likely take advantage of it. If Harper continues to play the way he has been and develop into the player that he has been billed to be than this is just the beginning.
Posted in MLB
Tagged 19 years old, 1st all star game, 1st place, 2012, all star game, american league, at bats, baseball, baseball tonight, bench, bryce harper, cardinals, fenway, field, fox, future star, giancarlo stanton, history, home run, innings, july 12th, kansas city, kaufman stadium, live online, Miami marlins, MLB, moment, national league, outfielder, red sox, rookie, si, start, tv schedule, unforgetable, washington nationals, watch live, what channel