Last week I had the opportunity to attend the prestigious MIT Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, where a senior executive of the Dallas Mavericks told me the following when I asked him about the famous “flu game”: “The fact that Jordan wasn’t sick that afternoon is an open secret in the NBA. Flu is a smokescreen that gives value to what he did. It’s much better to say that someone is playing under the weather that saying he’s feeling weak because he had few drinks the night before. (…) what Bill Simmons did with Jalen Rose, it’s a question to which they both know the answer, but it is a question nobody asks. Simmons, asking that question in a network like ESPN shows why he is the best sports writer out there. (…) It is not surprising that this has not come to light before. There are certain sports brands and sponsors that don’t want this to come to light. There is big money at stake. That’s why the media is not giving this story any shine. The Jordan brand is worth so much. The media knows it and don’t want to take risks, and Jordan’s sponsors are going to protect him.”
David Jacoby Rumors
Rose: When you go to one of your favorite restaurants, you can order things single, or you can order a combo meal… I would think that that was a number three. A combo meal. David Jacoby: What?! If I’m a little bit under the weather, I’m staying home. Rose: Not if it’s game six or seven.
Jalen Rose explains to Bill Simmons and David Jacoby how he gets inside NBA information before everyone else does and offers a cryptic answer to Bill’s question about whether Michael Jordan’s famous flu game was a “flu game or hangover game.”