Michael Jordan's 'Flu Game'
Michael Jordan is known for many things during his historic 15-year career. If you're a Utah Jazz fan, the "Flu Game" is probably fresh in your memory.
Suffering from food poisoning, Jordan stayed at his home the entire off-day that preceded Game 5 of the 1997 NBA Finals. To his teammates' surprise, Jordan arrived at Delta Center only a few hours before tip-off against the Jazz.
Personnel involved with the Chicago Bulls organization say the then-four-time MVP had lost weight and was severely dehydrated. Despite the odds and with sweat pouring down his face, Jordan grabbed a towel and hobbled to the baseline of the court.
"I was scared; I didn't know what was happening to me," Jordan said in reflection of the game. "I felt partially paralyzed."
Jordan picked up where he left off by playing stout defense and scoring at will. Although his body movements seemed more sluggish than normal, his determination would not fail him. After every timeout and commercial break, Jordan would grab his knees in exhaustion or walk to the bench and have a towel thrown over his head.
After a long, grueling battle, Jordan finished with 38 points and led the Bulls to a 90-88 win. The star guard played an unbelievable 44 minutes while sick.
"What a courageous, classic performance by the flu-ridden Michael Jordan," Marv Albert, the "voice of basketball," said after the remarkable game.
The Bulls would come home to the United Center two days later and claim the '97 NBA championship.
Many theories have risen over why Jordan was sick. From a rogue pizza driver poisoning him to predictions of a wild night before and hardcore hangover afterward, one thing remains certain: if there's a will, MJ always found a way.