A different GOAT discussion pertaining to 'The Last Dance'

Michael Jordan wasn't the only potential GOAT in "The Last Dance" documentary

Louie DiBiase
May 18, 2020 - 3:42 am
Michael Jordan and Phil Jackson

Photo: Robert Hanashiro - USA TODAY Sports


Michael Jordan's documentary series "The Last Dance" has taken over the sports world as the go-to program without the presence of live sports.

Of course, with viewers of all ages getting an inside look at Jordan and the Chicago Bulls' six championships in the 1990s, the debate of who is the greatest of all time (GOAT) has re-ignited. The documentary has confirmed or convinced some that Jordan is the GOAT, while others have dug their feet in on the likes of LeBron James claiming that title.

It is a fun back-and-forth discussion that has a lot of good points on both sides. There is, however, another GOAT discussion that should be taking place after the conclusion of the 10-part documentary on Sunday. 

Then-Chicago Bulls head coach Phil Jackson might have the most impressive resume of any coach in NBA history. Maybe even in the history of sports. 

Jackson's triangle offense took over the association in the '90s and the first decade of the 2000s. With Jordan and Scottie Pippen leading his team on the court, Jackson was the head coach for all six NBA titles in Chicago. The six rings are even more impressive when it came in the form of two three-peats. 

Unlike the six Super Bowls won by Bill Belichick and Tom Brady with the New England Patriots that were spread out over a 20-year span, Jackson and the Bulls won all six world titles in eight years. 

Having one of, if not, the greatest player in NBA (or even sports) history was the key factor in the Bulls' dynasty, but that shouldn't lessen Jackson's role in it all. 

His value to the team was evident in 1994 when Jordan retired and decided to play professional baseball. Jackson re-invented the Bulls offense into a ball-sharing, fast-paced unit that was one game away from making it to the Eastern Conference Finals. 

One championship run is a tough, draining process in the series format of the NBA playoffs. To be able to keep your team in the disciplined mindset, stringing together three consecutive Larry O'Brien trophies twice? It is something, perhaps, nobody will ever do again.

Not even the Miami Heat "Big 3" or the super team of Steph Curry, Kevin Durant, and Klay Thompson with the Golden State Warriors could pull it off. 

Jackson didn't just lead Chicago to multiple three-peats. After somehow getting fired by the Bulls after their sixth and final championship in 1998, Jackson only needed two years before he won another three-straight championships with Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O'Neal and the Los Angeles Lakers. 

Three three-peats for one head coach? Now that is something I'd bet never happens again in the history of sports. 

To add the cherry on top, Jackson would repeat again with the Lakers in 2009 and 2010. So 11 championships that came in the form of three three-peats and a repeat.

This has been well documented history, but it is a run that isn't talked about enough. There may have been multiple GOATs featured in "The Last Dance".

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