The fifth episode of ‘The Last Dance‘ wasted no time in jumping into the Kobe Bryant storyline and offered some great behind the scenes action involving himself and Michael Jordan, especially from the 1998 All-Star Game.
The 19-year-old Bryant was in just his second season at that point, while ’98 was of course Jordan’s last season with Chicago. Bryant was very much the young up and comer while Jordan already had five rings to his name and at that point was months away from his fifth league MVP award.
The ’98 All-Star Game was one of the very few times their careers overlapped. ‘The Last Dance’ took us into the locker room ahead of the game and shared what MJ had to say about the young Bryant and his opinion couldn’t have been more spot-on.
“That little Laker boy’s gonna take everyone one-on-one,” Jordan explained. “He don’t let the game come to him. He just go out there and take it. I’m going to make this shit happen, I’m going to make this a one-on-one game.”
‘The Last Dance’ has given us some amazing clips, but this one of Jordan casually sitting in the locker room and essentially giving us a preview of Bryant’s style and the player he was about to become in the NBA is extremely special.
In typical Jordan fashion, he led all scorers in the ’98 All-Star Game with 23 points, but Bryant had a strong night as well posting 18 points in just 22 minutes of action.