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Michael Jordan had a hilarious moment with fellow NBA75 inductee Magic Johnson, challenging the “old dog” to a legendary game of 1-on-1.
The ultimate test of talent in basketball is this: defeating Michael Jordan in a game of 1-on-1.
Although the Ball patriarch LaVar Ball has long claimed that he could defeat Jordan in a 1-on-1 matchup, a simulated game between the two proved otherwise. For everyone besides LaVar Ball, betting on winning against Michael Jordan is guaranteed embarrassment—unless you’re a fellow member of the NBA75.
Behind the scenes of the NBA75 ceremony, Michael Jordan jokingly pointed out “old dog” Magic Johnson, who was only drafted five years before Jordan in 1979. The two are three years apart, although they dominated different decades: Magic was a force in the 1980s, while Jordan ruled the 1990s. Although they played in many of the same All-Star Games and were teammates on the 1992 Olympic “Dream Team”, they dominated different eras—and Jordan joked about wanting to see which of the two is truly better than the other.
“We’re gonna play 1-on-1, me and you, right now,” Jordan said with a smile.
Michael Jordan challenged Magic Johnson to a game of 1-on-1 during NBA75
In his first NBA Finals Championship in 1991, it was only fitting that Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen defeated Magic Johnson and the Los Angeles Lakers 4-1. Soon after, Johnson retired from the NBA due to his HIV diagnosis, while Jordan remained in the league until 2003.
Since both Jordan and Johnson are both around 60 years old, perhaps a 1-on-1 game would be more equal between the two these days. Ten years ago, MJ revealed that he could have definitely defeated LeBron James in a 1-on-1, but he was unsure about Kobe Bryant. Perhaps Jordan and Johnson could settle the debate with a celebrity basketball game—after all, Magic Johnson once raised $1.3 million in a celebrity game with Shaquille O’Neal and Spike Lee.