Michael Jordan Destroyed Himself After Having 1 of the Worst Shooting Games of His Career in the ’97 Playoffs: ‘I Played Like Doo-Doo’
Chicago Bulls legend Michael Jordan is the all-time postseason leader in points per game and player efficiency rating. The Hall of Famer averaged 33.4 points while shooting 48.7% from the field in 179 playoff games. He rarely had bad games when it mattered most.
However, during the 1997 playoffs, Jordan had an awful shooting night against the Miami Heat in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals. MJ was so disgusted with himself that he destroyed his performance while speaking to the media.
Michael Jordan: “I played like doo-doo”
Jordan had a woeful shooting night in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals. He shot 4-of-15 from the field and 0-of-1 from beyond the arc. Fortunately for the Bulls, His Airness went 15-of-16 from the free-throw line and finished with 23 points and nine rebounds in a 75-68 win.
During his postgame media session with reporters, Jordan talked about how poorly he played. He even poked fun at Scottie Pippen, who was sitting next to him and shot 9-of-21 overall.
“I played like doo-doo,” Jordan said. “I made some free throws down the stretch. Other than that, they did it without me tonight. I’m doo-doo, he’s (Pippen) sh*t.”
Jordan and Pippen each scored 23 points in Game 2. However, they combined to shoot 13-of-36 from the field. The Bulls legends were determined to play better as the series moved along, and they did in Game 3.
Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen shot the ball well in Game 3
Jordan and Pippen were spectacular in Game 3 against the Heat. The former scored 34 points on 56.0% shooting from the field, while the latter put up 21 points on 50.0% shooting. The Bulls won by a final score of 98-74 to take a commanding 3-0 lead in the series.
Chicago wound up winning the series in five games. Jordan averaged 30.2 points, but he only shot 38.7% from the floor. Meanwhile, Pippen averaged 16.8 points on 41.7% shooting. It was strange to see the Bulls icons struggle from the field, but the Heat did have a physical defense.
The Bulls faced the Utah Jazz in the 1997 Finals after beating the Heat. Jordan didn’t shoot the ball well against Miami, but he was much better versus Utah.
MJ shot 45.6% in the 1997 Finals
Behind Jordan and Pippen, the Bulls defeated the Jazz in six games for their fifth championship. Superman averaged 32.3 points while shooting 45.6% from the field. He finally got back to being efficient after struggling with his shot in the Heat series.
Jordan finished the 1997 playoffs averaging 31.1 points while shooting 45.6% overall. While he did have two games where he shot below 30.0%, Black Jesus never had two lousy shooting nights in a row and led the Bulls to the Larry O’Brien Trophy for the fifth time in seven years.
Not only is Jordan first in NBA postseason history in points per game and PER, but he’s also first in both categories in the regular season. The 10-time scoring champion is statistically the most efficient scorer in NBA history, which is why many people believe he’s the GOAT. After all, Jordan scored the best and won six rings.
Stats courtesy of Basketball Reference