Isiah Thomas says he’s more dominant than Michael Jordan, didn’t consider MJ as competition
For NBA fans of the late 1980s to the early 1990s, the rivalry between Michael Jordan and Isiah Thomas proved to be one of the most intense head-to-head feuds of the that era–both on and off the court.
Their unique relationship was put into the limelight in ESPN’s mega-hit docuseries “The Last Dance.” As it turns out, however, there wasn’t even a rivalry to begin with, according to Thomas himself.
Speaking on a recent appearance on Club Shay Shay with Shannon Sharpe, Thomas explained exactly why he believed Jordan just wasn’t in his league:
When asked about to talk about his rivalry with MJ, Thomas seemed to laugh off the comparison, as he initially struggled to put into words why he never thought of Jordan in that particular way:
“Just head-to-head, I was dominant over him,” the Detroit Pistons legend and NBA icon said. “Until ’91 when I basically had career-ending wrist surgery, up until then, my record against him and his team — it really wasn’t competition there.”
Some strong words from Thomas here. To be fair, though, his Bad Boys Pistons did dominate Jordan’s Chicago Bulls during Thomas’ prime. The Pistons won back-to-back NBA titles in ’89 and ’90, while also disposing of MJ’s Bulls during the playoffs.
Thomas went on to express how Jordan was never in his crosshairs. Back then, Thomas had other greats in mind:
“He just wasn’t my competition,” Isiah added regarding his supposed rivalry with MJ. “My focus was [Larry] Bird, Magic [Johnson], Dr. J [Julius Erving], Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Those were the guys. I don’t care what anybody says. You can go back and look at history — those were the guys.”
Clearly, there is no love lost between these two. It will be interesting to see how Michael Jordan reacts–if ever he does–to this recent claim from Isiah Thomas. Stay tuned, NBA fans.