The 1992 US Olympic Basketball team went down in history as the “Dream Team”. A team consisting of some of the best the world had to offer. It featured Magic Johnson Larry Bird, and even the face of the NBA at the time, Michael Jordan. It certainly was a super team on all fronts, but one of their flaws was their varying opinions. Like which NBA team was the best in history.
It was quite a heated debate, with almost every one of the legends chipping in with their opinions. However, things changed when Jordan made a clear statement that the best team in history didn’t exist. Why? Well, because he hadn’t finished playing basketball yet. A declaration that, as revealed in the book When the Game Was Ours, did not sit well with Magic Johnson, who claimed His Airness would never win five titles.
Michael Jordan once claimed he would be a part of the best team in history, prompting a terrible prediction from Magic Johnson
Michael Jordan isn’t a player you associate with the word “humble”. Widely considered the GOAT, MJ had full confidence in his abilities from the start of his career in 1984 all the way to the end. And, in 1992, his ego was sky-high.
He had just won his second consecutive NBA Championship when he was invited to be a part of the 1992 US Olympic Dream Team. A team filled with some of the NBA’s greatest legends. And, with so many big personalities in the locker room, it comes as no surprise that there were times when arguments broke out.
One particular argument was about the best team in NBA history. Magic Johnson believes it was his 87′ Lakers, Larry Bird made the case for the 86′ Celtics, and Karl Malone was a big fan of the 83′ 76ers. However, Jordan, while puffing a cigar, claimed none of them were the best, as he hadn’t finished his career yet. A huge boast that prompted Magic Johnson to make a bold but incredibly wrong prediction about MJ’s future.
“‘You haven’t even seen the best NBA team of all time yet,’ Jordan announced. ‘I’m just getting started. I’m going to win more championships than all of you guys. Tell you what. Let’s have this conversation after I’m done playing.’ ‘You aren’t winning five championships,’ Magic protested.”
All it took was four years for Michael to prove Magic wrong. After all, his 1996 Chicago Bulls firmly established themselves as one of the best if not the best team in NBA history. With a 72-10 record and an NBA Championship to top it off, they certainly have a good case.
Magic Johnson was incredibly jealous of MJ’s status as the best in the world
It’s safe to say, that Magic Johnson was quite jealous of Michael Jordan, and even resented him at times. His Airness signed the most lucrative shoe deal in history with Nike. A deal that Magic passed up back in the day. A decision he still deeply regrets. This coupled with the fact that MJ was considered by many to be the greatest rubbed Johnson the wrong way.
So, to no one’s surprise, they argued about who the best in the world was when they teamed up together on the 1992 Dream Team.
The debate was settled by Magic’s greatest rival, Larry Bird who has on several occasions praised Jordan’s greatness. Nevertheless, it was quite the spectacle. After all, it’s rare to see two legends compete for the title of the best in the world.