Isiah Thomas is rightly considered one of the best players the NBA has ever seen, and that was proven with a pair of championship wins along with other feats. In a new interview, the Detroit Pistons legend believes that he was a far better player than Michael Jordan and said he was “dominant” over the Chicago Bulls superstar.
Thomas, 59, has long since moved to the analyst’s desk as part of the NBA TV crew after stints as a head coach and executive after his playing days were over. Sitting down with Shannon Sharpe for the former NFL star’s Club Shay Shay program, Thomas reignited the long-simmering feud between him and Jordan in a direct fashion.
“Just head-to-head, I was dominant over [Michael Jordan],” Thomas said to Sharpe, reacting to the host stating that Thomas saw the Celtics and the Lakers as true rivals. “When our times met…until , when I basically had career-ending wrist surgery, up until then, my record against him and his team…it really wasn’t competition there.”
Thomas added, “[Michael Jordan] wasn’t my competition. My focus was Bird, Magic, Doctor J, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Those were the guys, I don’t care what anybody says. You can go back and look at history, those were the guys.”
Factual things are factual, although it would be a fallacy not to mention that Jordan went on to become an icon with the sport and remains so by way of apparel and his deserved status as a basketball savant.
On Club Shay Shay, Thomas also dished on other things such as hailing LeBron James’ talents, saying that Jordan was just the fifth-dominant player he’s faced, and more.
NBA Twitter of course had their commentary to make, and we’ve got those reactions listed out below.
Isiah Thomas vs Michael Jordan from 1985-1990— ALL ICONIC SPORTS (@ALLICONICSPORTS) November 11, 2020
▫️20-10 record (68%)
▫️3-0 in playoff series
He’s allowed to say what he wants https://t.co/yXXXqwg8pk
“Kurt Rambis was a tougher player for me to go against than Michael Jordan” - Isiah Thomas— Particle Man (@JesseGladsaget) November 13, 2020
“Man, what Isiah said was pretty dumb” - Me
“Who are you to tell Isiah how he feels?” - A certain remedial Stanbase
Michael Jordan and Isiah Thomas beefing since the mid-80s. I laid out every single detail and the stories that you never heard and I don't think you can find them anywhere else. pic.twitter.com/sxdI5oKptw— OLDSKOOLBBALL (@Oldskoolbball1) November 11, 2020
Isiah Thomas saying Michael Jordan is the GOAT back in the 90’s. Nowadays he dimishes himself to make it seem like MJ wasn’t that great 😂😂 didn’t he also drop him back multiple spots for players that played before him? 🤔🤡 pic.twitter.com/InkOLMd8xs— RD 🇨🇦 (@NorthSidePace) November 10, 2020
Michael Jordan seeing Isiah Thomas has an opinion 👀 pic.twitter.com/6SQ3wmyOJl— 4_luvadagame_24 (@ace_1985) November 11, 2020
Did Isiah Thomas really say Michael Jordan is the 5th-best player he faced? https://t.co/jZNOjYcdTV— Chris Broussard (@Chris_Broussard) November 11, 2020
The Last Dance ended 4 months ago and Isiah Thomas is still talking about Michael Jordan. And to think they call this generation soft.— Carrington Harrison (@cdotharrison) November 10, 2020
Isiah Thomas says he was "dominant" over Michael Jordan! Naw bruh, your teams were dominant over the Bulls! There was never any doubt as to who the best overall player was in that series! They didnt come up wit the Jordan Rules bc Isiah was "dominant" over MJ! #RevisionistHistory— My Name is Mario & I am a Tar Heel (@Briccyardlilyo) November 13, 2020
Crazy how bitter Isiah Thomas is towards Michael Jordan eh— G🔴⭕ner Since 1886™ (@BP_Rodgers) November 12, 2020
Isiah Thomas has to be the biggest hatin ass bull on planet earth 😂😂😂 he is to Michael Jordan, as Paul Pierce is to Lebron bro 😂😂😂— TopShotThottie (@LanceTheDon717) November 11, 2020
How can Isiah Thomas say he was more dominant than Michael Jordan in head to head gms b4 his injury when he only outscored MJ 5 times in 43 head to head gms w/MJ avg 31 & 30 in reg season & playoffs vs Isiahs 21 & 18. MJ also scored 61 & 59 against Zeke who never had 40 or more🤦🏽♂️ pic.twitter.com/fgbzYqFr0u— ♛YOUNGBLOOD PRIEST♛ (@YNGBLDPRST) November 11, 2020
At this point the only thing that will satisfy Isiah Thomas, is Mike shooting the 30 with Michael Jordan..— Ced Cousins (@ThatWhatSheCed) November 11, 2020
I can't deal with Isiah Thomas saying he wasn't worried about Michael Jordan....man, shut up...— Sectional Nap Taker (@BaryMrowns) November 11, 2020
I live for Isiah Thomas’s shade towards Michael Jordan— Fidel Cashflow (@CozyTonyII) November 11, 2020