Some questions after viewing The Last Dance...
- James Jordan isn't murdered. This is the big one. Without his father's tragic passing, MJ would not have retired as quickly as he did. Certainly retirement was on his mind and he was due for a long break after the first three-peat. But he wouldn't have left as abruptly in the middle of the season, and he might not have spent his retirement playing baseball- at least, not as urgently- if it wasn't one of the last things he said to his dad. So when might have been a more natural time for him to retire, if he does? And what does he end up doing? Does he take up pro golf? Pro gambling?
- The Bulls win the '93-'94 championship without Jordan. Does this mean Air Jordan is expendable, even a little bit? Of course not. But this would establish the Bulls as a true dynasty that doesn't require his presence, and instead begin to rally around Scottie Pippen as their centerpiece. Which means that if and when MJ does return to basketball, the team might have different dynamics, even with Phil Jackson at helm and most of the core players. And would Scottie want to be #2 again? Either way, does this mean he gets paid more?
- Michael Jordan continues playing baseball past '94. The way the documentary frames it, he refused to cross picket lines during the MLB strike and a chance practice game with B.J. Armstrong reignited his desire to play for the Bulls and so he left retirement. But had the players strike never happened, he probably would have been 100% focused on his new sporting career, I would imagine. So say the strike doesn't happen. How long he keep playing? Does he make it into the majors? How high could have have reached?
- Horace Grant doesn't leave for Orlando Magic. The show frames the reason why '94-'95 was so rough for the Bulls was because Grant's departure. So what if he doesn't? Certainly Jordan's old teammates would want him back just as much if he still goes through his change of heart, but what if they weren't playing as poorly without him that year? Maybe he would have rejoined the following season?
- Scottie Pippen doesn't refuse to play the final seconds of Game 3 against the Knicks. The whole incident is depicted as Pippen's big heel turn, when the normally mild-mannered player digs into selfishness and puts the entire team in jeopardy. But I just felt bad for Kukoč, who's just like this international student swept up in the ego and drama of the cool kids' clique for the second time- the first being the '92 Olympics. Glad he made that shot. But what if Pippen had gone along in '94? How would that change his reputation and would that make a difference on his career, if at all?