Ozzie teamed up with ESPN to for a new series entitled “Story Time With Ozzie Guillen” where he tells reminisces on experiences he had as a player for the White Sox organization. Guillen tells the story of the day he and his teammate Joey Cora made the mistake of playing MJ in a game of 2-on-1 for $100.
This is a story about Joey Cora and Ozzie Guillen playing basketball against Michael Jordan. Mmm, mmm, mmm, not a good idea.
It was spring training. In the clubhouse, there was always people around. A lot of people play ping-pong. Me and Joey, we used to go out and play basketball and have some fun. I was pretty good. I was tiny. No more than 155 pounds. But I was bigger than Joey. I feel like I was Manute Bol next to Joey Cora. Or Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Or Shaquille O’Neal next to him. I feel like I was a center. I look at him down like he was a piece of a chicken wing to me.
One day, we have a new player, a new member of the White Sox baseball. That was somebody named Michael Jordan. All of a sudden, we make the big mistake to try to compete against him playing basketball. We decide to play 2-on-1 against him. We start messing around. All of a sudden, we start scoring. We kicking his butt! And we start passing the ball and we beating him. He just playing around. Then we up by five points. We start being cocky. We chest-bump to each other. We high five. I said, ‘Now we going to start making money off of him.’ So I said, ‘100 bucks. We beat you. We play 10 points.’ He said, ‘OK, game.’
After the 100 bucks, we score two more and he’s down by 7-1. We missed and he grabbed the ball, and we never touched the ball again. We hand the ball back—check—and he just went crazy. He wasn’t checking nothing. He ain’t checking shit. He would just dunk. One after another. We went to stop him and he would run through us. He would grab the ball, dribble, and go through like nothing was around him. He would push me around. He would dunk. He would push Joey around. It’s funny because I don’t see his back, I see his crotch. Every time he would go around us, I would just see his lower body. I wouldn’t see his hands. His lower body was over my face seven times. We tried to push him back and play dirty against him. He don’t care. We can put three Joeys and seven Ozzies and he going to keep going.
When he was hitting us, we were like, ‘This is not an NBA game. This is a pickup game in the clubhouse. I’m not Karl Malone or Larry Bird. I’m Ozzie. I don’t have nothing to do with basketball.’ I was like, ‘Why are you being so aggressive? For 100 bucks?’ He said, ‘Nope, it’s not the 100 bucks. It’s cause you’ll be telling everybody that you just beat Michael Jordan.’ He realized that. The first thing that would have come out of my mouth would be, ‘I beat Michael Jordan playing basketball once,’ and he ain’t gonna let it happen. All of a sudden, we lost the game 10-7. That’s it. Game’s over!
The lesson I learned from that? Don’t fuck with the wrong people. Easy as that.
You can check out the video above to hear the full story. You can also read the dialog of the video above. So what we’ve learned from this is never bet Michael Jordan in a game of basketball…ever.