In the year 1997, Michael Jordan had one of the best games of his life. He shot 13-27 scoring 38 points, 5 assists, 7 rebounds in 44 minutes of a crucial Game 5 before being carried to his seat by teammate Scottie Pippen. MJ led the Chicago Bulls to a 90-88 victory over the Utah Jazz.
The significance of that game is that Jordan entered the game ill, sick with the flu, and looked as though he could have collapsed at any moment. He gutted through and eventually led the Bulls to their 5th championship in Game 6.
That game, known as The Flu Game to NBA basketball fans will remain one of the most incredible and historical NBA finals games in NBA history. That was 19 years ago, but it has never been forgotten.
How do you celebrate such a feat after so many years? Jordan Brand had an idea, but initially sounded like it was adding insult to injury. They decided to open a one day pop-up shop in Salt Lake City, Utah to celebrate that moment.
It seems almost as callous as Jordan was to his opponents, but Jordan Brand has a different spin on why Utah instead of Chicago, or New York. Simply celebrate the occasion in the city where the event took place.
Senior Director, Jill Rankin expounded to Fox Sports
We have a lot of opportunities to celebrate in Chicago, and we haven’t in Salt Lake. And we know that we have a lot of fans there, so we wanted to take this opportunity to really celebrate that moment.”
We considered that, and we went and we talked to fans in Salt Lake and we realized that people ultimately have a respect for Michael, and were excited to be included in an opportunity to celebrate,
Really, it’s just a celebration
Believe it or not, fans stood in a line that extended blocks long, waiting to get inside of the building. After opening in the afternoon, it stayed open into the night selling retro and new colorway Air Jordan’s while the infamous game played in the background.
Jazz fans also lined up to celebrate the day their hearts were broken. Only a performance like the one Jordan displayed could make something like that possible. That moment still remains special almost two decades later.
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