Everyone’s been talking about one particular moment featured in ESPN’s “The Last Dance,” involving the “Bad Boy” Pistons, which followed their 1991 Eastern Conference Finals matchup.
The Pistons had dominated the Bulls in the years prior, having knocked them out of the playoffs the last three times they met, but 1991 proved to be a different story. Michael Jordan had bulked up a bit, getting stronger, and the Bulls young players had come into their own.
As such, the Bulls emerged victorious in the ECF, but the Pistons felt no need to give them props after the series-deciding game. In fact, the Pistons players chose not to shake the Bulls’ hands, a move perpetuated by Bill Laimbeer.
And Laimbeer has no regrets about it, either, which he states on ESPN’s “The Jump.”
“They whined and cried for a year-and-a-half about how bad we were for the game, but more importantly they were bad people,” he said. “We weren’t bad people. We were just basketball players — winning, and that stuck with me because they didn’t really know who we were and what we were about as individuals in our family life. So all that whining they did, why shake their hands? They were just whiners. They won the series, give them credit, we got old, they got past us. But OK, move on.”
“No,” Laimbeer said. “Why would I regret now, today? I don’t care what the media says about them. I never did. If I did, I would be a basket case, especially back then. I was about winning basketball games and winning championships and did whatever I had to do to get the most out of my ability and our team, and we did. At the end of the day, we’re called ‘World Champions.’”
It’s still a bad look, and the Pistons set a bad example there, despite what Laimbeer says.