In the 1993 NBA Finals, the Chicago Bulls faced the Phoenix Suns, which featured Dream Team members Charles Barkley, Michael Jordan, and Scottie Pippen. The Bulls would go on to win the series in six games. The game that sticks out in the series is game two. The Bulls would win by three [111-108], Jordan and Barkley both finished the game with 42 points apiece, but according to former Suns forward Cedric Ceballos, the real story happened the night before game 2.
“When they talk about comparisons to this gentleman to other ones. I am really not that close to LeBron [James] to know his methods, I watched Kobe [Bryant] a little bit, but they really took care of their bodies. Kobe and LeBron really took care of their bodies. LeBron now and Kobe then, I’m talking rest and eating right, no hanging out and no drinking. Now, Michael, this guy is, smoking cigars and drinking after games. Prime example, we are in the Finals myself, Charles [Barkley] and Michael were hanging out,” said Ceballos. ”
“We leave the nightclub and go to Michael’s hotel room, and they goof around playing cards, and I leave at maybe 2:30 or 3 O’clock in the morning. So, I don’t know how long Charles and Michael stayed up after I left.
But, I do know he woke up to a 7 Am tee time and walked 18 holes on the golf course before beating us in the Finals in game two. Like unbelievable and this is not a late-game this a Finals game on the weekend, meaning it started to accommodate Eastern Conference Standard time. And We are playing at home, so are game started at 4 or 5 O’Clock to accommodate the east coast time zone.”
So, you can only imagine getting up and saying when does this guy sleep.
Ceballos Wasn’t the Only one That was Amazed by the Things Jordan did on Little Sleep so was Mike Krzyzewski
During the 1992 Olympics, according to Ceballos, Mike Krzyzewski talks about some of the things that took place throughout the trip. Krzyzewski revealed that he only saw Jordan getting a quick nap before a guy only once.
“I remember Coach Krzyzewski during the Olympic days, he was amazed at when this person sleep and amazed at how he played. Knowing that they were hanging out and doing stuff and still had commercials, photoshoots, and all of that,” said Ceballos.
“And caught [Michael Jordan] napping one time before a game and said that’s the only time I ever saw him sleep, and I was just amazed at that. I’m hurt at the time on the bench, and I’m really struggling I was just there relaxing observing all of it. While he was in full-fledged and engaged in the game. So, don’t compare anybody to me in my eyes to Michael Jordan.”
This sounds similar to the story Laker great Magic Johnson told over All-Star Weekend in Chicago about Jordan’s Shrugg game in the Finals against the Portland Trailblazers in 1992.
The night before, according to Magic Johnson, Jordan was losing in a game of bid whist to Johnson and Jordan’s late father James.
“The night before he hit all of them threes against Portland, we’re playing bid whist at his house,” Magic Johnson told Heavy’s Brandon’ Scoop B’ Robinson while speaking at McDonald’s Black & Positively Golden Event in Chicago, Illinois during NBA All-Star Weekend.
“His dad and I, we bust him up, we tore him up, I’m running six no’s and five specials on Michael.”
Magic finally had enough and informed MJ that he was going home because he had to call Jordan’s game the next day.
“So we play, and I say: ‘Michael I gotta go home, you gotta go home, you’ve got a game.
“He said: ‘Nah MJ [Magic Johnson] because Mike was just so competitive. When he loses, he don’t want you to leave.”
The next day Magic witnessed Jordan explode for 39 points, and he dished out 11 assists in the Bulls’ 122–89 win.
When Jordan drained six straight three-pointers, he turned to the scorers’ table and delivered the infamous shrug.
“He was so hot that night, so he owed me a lot because I’m the one he was mad at. That’s why he took it out on Clyde Drexler the next day in the game.”