Kwame Brown dropped a nugget in one of his first videos that shed some light on why Michael Jordan was so mean to him during Jordan’s two years with the Wizards.
Brown claims he was told he was never supposed to be a Wizards and a trade had been worked out for the Bulls Elton Brand.
At the time, Brand was a 20-10 machine and an All-Star.
Jordan felt with Brand the Wizards had a much better chance at making noise in the playoffs than an 18-year-old rookie right out of high school.
As the story goes Wizards owner Abe Polian at the last minute nixed the trade and pissed off Jordan who in turn took out his anger Brown.
Brown says the media have known this for years and never reported on it to keep the bust and Bonafide Scrub narrative going.
I asked someone who has covered the Wizards back when they were called the Bullets if this was true. He didn’t want to be named because he said “I am not trying to get on Kwame’s radar”, but he did confirm the story is true.
“You have to understand back in 2001, there weren’t social media, there weren’t 40 different sports networks and streaming sites and certainly there weren’t many types of shows like First Take. Locally it was known that Jordan was coming back and preferred a veteran team and wanted to trade Kwame Brown, I am not sure how known it was nationally. Would a Stephen A. Smith have known this, probably because he was more of an NBA reporter back then, but back then and even now I supposed you had to be very careful what you reported about Michael Jordan.
When those stories came out of how Jordan was treating Kwame Brown his rooking year, you didn’t see a lot of co-signing from the media. No one wanted to be on Jordan’s bad side.”
In retrospect, we probably all owe Kwame an apology and maybe be a little more mindful the next time we think of calling someone a bust or bonafide scrub.
Flip the page for the video of Brown telling the story.