On a fateful evening late in the 2002-03 NBA season, the Los Angeles Lakers faced off against the Washington Wizards, and Kobe Bryant poured in 55 points against a Michael Jordan who was about to retire.
There was a well-known moment when Bryant was called for charging against Jordan, and the two exchanged some pleasantries.
Actor John Cusack recently revealed what the University of North Carolina product told the suburban Philadelphia native during that moment.
55 pts de Kobe dans son dernier duel face à Jordan (23 pts). 2003.#Lakers #Wizards pic.twitter.com/gVmrCxdTlv
— T.V. (@ThibaudVezirian) March 31, 2020
It’s well-known that Jordan was Bryant’s idol, and that Bryant modeled parts of his game after the man who led the Chicago Bulls to six NBA championships.
That contest was the last time the two legends would ever face off against each other in an NBA game.
On another occasion, then-Lakers head coach Phil Jackson arranged a meeting between the two men, and Bryant challenged Jordan to a game of one-on-one while telling the former Bull that he would shut him down.
It was that type of uber competitiveness that set both guards above almost everyone else who has ever played the game.