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John Stockton almost wasn’t in ‘The Last Dance,’ called it a ‘Michael Jordan puff piece,’ director says

John Stockton almost wasn't in 'The Last Dance,' called it a 'Michael Jordan puff piece,' director says

'I finally got (Stockton) on the phone after like two years of chasing him,' director Jason Hehir said

"The Last Dance" fundamentally exists to tell Michael Jordan's story. Although that might be gratifying for him and his teammates, the players that they vanquished along the way have not been so eager to relive those memories. Patrick Ewing revealed this week that he hasn't even been watching the documentary. Reggie Miller resisted participating in it for quite some time.

Another name surfaced this week on the list of 1990s superstars who didn't initially want to take part in the documentary: John Stockton. As director Jason Hehir revealed on "The Dan Patrick Show," Stockton said that he did not want to be a part of a "Michael Jordan puff piece."

"I finally got (Stockton) on the phone after like two years of chasing him," Hehir said. "(Stockton) said, 'I don't want to be a part of a Michael Jordan puff piece.'"

The interview itself, as Hehir reveals, didn't take place until March 10, 2020. Only a day later, the NBA season ground to a halt after Rudy Gobert tested positive for coronavirus. They were able to conduct the interview so late because the documentary was initially not set to air until June. When the virus forced the entire country into a quarantine, ESPN moved it up. As of last week, the final episodes still had not been completed because of the truncated timeline.

Eventually, Stockton did agree to participate, and he is likely to be heavily featured in the remaining episodes. His Utah Jazz faced off with Jordan's Chicago Bulls in the 1997 and 1998 NBA Finals and lost on both occasions. Needless to say, those outcomes obviously paint Jordan in a more favorable light. Although the documentary hasn't exactly been a puff piece, his participation ensured a heavy focus on his successes, two of which came at Stockton's expense. His reluctance was more than understandable, but his presence ultimately adds a needed voice to a crucial point of the story.

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