Here’s Audio Proof of Michael Jordan Saying He Wouldn’t Join Dream Team If Isiah Thomas Was on the Roster

Jordan previously denied the rumor during The Last Dance.

ESPN’s long-awaited The Last Dance documentary was a rousing success. The 10-part series captivated audiences and re-opened discussions on many theories about Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls.

On Tuesday, an old audio clip seems to have disproven one of the documentary’s claims.

Journalist Jack McCallum launched “The Dream Team Tapes” podcast in 2011. In the series, he posted an interview with Jordan about the 1992 Olympics.

“Rod Thorn called me,” Jordan tells McCallum in the recording. “I said, ‘Rod, I won’t play if Isiah Thomas is on the team.”

An early episode of The Last Dance rehashed the issues between the Chicago Bulls and the Detroit Pistons. After losing to the Bulls in the 1991 Eastern Conference Finals, the Pistons left the court without shaking hands. Jordan admitted his relationship with the players would never be the same.

For years, journalists suspected this incident is the reason behind Isiah Thomas’ exclusion from the 1992 U.S. Olympic team. Many believe Jordan himself advised Rod Thorn to exclude Thomas. During the documentary, Jordan denied those claims.

“I respect Isiah Thomas’ talent,” Jordan said. “To me, the best point guard of all time is Magic Johnson and behind him is Isiah Thomas. No matter how much I hate him, I respect his game…it was insinuated that I was asking about him, but I never threw his name in there.”

Rod Thorn recently joined ESPN’s Golic and Wingo to discuss the Dream Team. Thorn denied the rumors as well.

“There was never anything in my conversation with [Jordan] that had to do with Isiah Thomas,” Thorn said. “Period.”


ESPN’s ‘The Last Dance’ Shows How Important Michael Jordan Was — And Still Is — To Basketball

Five Takeaways From the Seventh & Eighth Episodes of ESPN’s ‘The Last Dance’

Torry Threadcraft

Torry Threadcraft is a writer who covers music, sports, and culture. You can find his daily ramblings and culinary takes at @dreadcraft.

Published by
Torry Threadcraft

Recent Posts

Best Songs of The Week: Navy Blue, Benny Sings, and More

The Round-Up is Okayplayer’s weekly playlist of the best songs in the worlds of hip-hop… Read More

March 24, 2023

7 New Albums You Should Be Listening To (Week of March 24)

Navy Blue leads our spotlighted albums of the week. The Brooklyn rapper released his impressive… Read More

March 24, 2023

JAY-Z Achieves $2.5 Billion Net Worth

In a new report, Forbes revealed that hip-hop's first billionaire, JAY-Z, now has a net… Read More

March 24, 2023

Watch Ash & Pikachu Take One Last Walk On ‘Pokémon’

After 26 years of anime series Pokémon, Pikachu and Ash Ketchum star in the latter's final… Read More

March 24, 2023

Danny Brown & JPEGMAFIA Are ‘Scaring the Hoes’ on Their New Album

Alternative rap wordsmiths Danny Brown and JPEGMAFIA have released their debut collaborative album Scaring the… Read More

March 24, 2023

Listen to Navy Blue’s Major Label Debut, ‘Ways of Knowing’

On Thursday, Navy Blue released his Def Jam Recordings debut LP Ways of Knowing, fully… Read More

March 24, 2023