ESPN aired Episodes 5 and 6 of "The Last Dance" on Sunday, and the documentary series dove into everything from Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant meeting in the 1998 All-Star Game to the birth of Nike's Air Jordan brand to the 1992 and 1993 NBA Finals to stories behind the Dream Team to Jordan's ascension as the most recognizable athlete in the world.
Players across the league went to Twitter to show their love for Kobe, reminisce about Jordan's debut signature sneaker and look back at the time when everyone wanted to "Be Like Mike."
Episode 5 opened at the 1998 All-Star Game, which was Jordan's final as a Chicago Bull and Bryant's first. Watching a young Kobe take on MJ brought back memories of the Hall of Fame Los Angeles Lakers guard.
😥😥😥😥 that intro just tore me apart man. Man I wish Kobe was here to see this man. Thank you for sharing that beautiful and special footage Mike! We miss you Bean❤️🙏🏽! #TheLastDance— Quinn Cook (@QCook323) May 4, 2020
KOBE WAS MY MJ🙏🏽😢— Trae Young (@TheTraeYoung) May 4, 2020
Growing up it was all Kobe for me, but seeing who he learned from makes me respect these OGs even more!! Missing basketball man! ✊🏼💯— Mario Hezonja (@mariohezonja) May 4, 2020
We all miss you Kobe 💜💛 pic.twitter.com/7K2IRjExxh— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) May 4, 2020
Who could imagine MJ signing with any company other than Nike? Well, it almost happened, as Jordan revealed that his first choice for a shoe deal was Adidas. Players had trouble imagining the Air Jordan coming from any manufacturer but the Swoosh.
If MJ would've been with Adidas😳👀🔥— Trae Young (@TheTraeYoung) May 4, 2020
MJ's mom 2/2... 1. don't quit basketball 2. go listen to NIKE #LastDance— Alex Caruso (@ACFresh21) May 4, 2020
I wish Jordan's was 108$ with tax today!!! 😂😂😂— Eric Paschall (@epaschall) May 4, 2020
Loved MJ lacing his sneakers to end the ep 5. Don't know why but it was satisfying 😂🤔— Kevin Love (@kevinlove) May 4, 2020
We also got to see what it was really like to "Be Like Mike" in the '90s, including Jordan having his own space inside the Bulls' locker room, becoming a worldwide staple in commercials, selling out football arenas and running into the biggest actors of the era.
I just peeped MJ had his own office in the team locker room 😂😂— Donovan Mitchell (@spidadmitchell) May 4, 2020
They sold out a football stadium for a basketball game 🤯🐐 #TheLastDance— Nate Robinson (@nate_robinson) May 4, 2020
Phil Jackson kicked Jerry Seinfeld out the locker room. 🤣😭— Kendrick Perkins (@KendrickPerkins) May 4, 2020
Cameras not allowed in those Magic and Michael card games? 😂#TheLastDance— Mo Bamba (@TheRealMoBamba) May 4, 2020
The 1992 NBA Finals saw the famous shrug in Game 1, in which Jordan hit six 3-pointers and scored 35 points in the first half. A postgame image of John Michael Wozniak -- a former Bulls security guard who died in January -- reenacting the famous pose dominated social media following the episode.
Jordan's manager and spokeswoman, Estee Portnoy, shared her appreciation via Twitter.
RIP John Michael Wozniak. He passed in January and I'm sure he has a front seat watching from heaven for sure. https://t.co/l31zNcY6BG— Estee Portnoy (@esteep) May 4, 2020
The 1993 NBA Finals pinned Jordan's Bulls against Charles Barkley and the Phoenix Suns. Barkley showcased the game that made him MVP that season, but the Suns lost in six games. For players who were not yet born or were too young to remember Sir Charles' prime, this portion of the documentary served as a reminder of how dominant Barkley was.
Jordan dropped 41 a game in the Finals against the MVP.🤣🤣#TheLastDance— Mo Bamba (@TheRealMoBamba) May 4, 2020
Stop playin with Charles like he didn't have G!!!— Tyus Jones (@1Tyus) May 4, 2020
I don't think people realize how good Charles Barkley was. He just happened to be in the Jordan era. #LastDance— Jarred Vanderbilt (@JVando) May 4, 2020
Charles Barkley was the best 6'5" power forward the game has even seen https://t.co/AVQJ36TjZu— The Undefeated (@TheUndefeated) May 4, 2020