“Every time you hear about an athlete having the flu or flu-like symptoms while the team is on the road, there is a strong chance he/she is suffering from food poisoning from rival fans,” says Larry Brown, former coach of the Charlotte Bobcats.
Michael Jordan had the flu. Or did he? Tim Grover, his trainer, said he was poisoned.
Here’s the Cliff Notes version. Back in 1997, Jordan played through a crucial championship game against the Utah Jazz with what everyone thought at the time was a debilitating case of the flu. The Chicago Bulls were staying in a Park City Utah hotel on the eve of Game 3, Jordan was hungry, room service had stopped earlier at 9 p.m., Jordan’s trainer, Tim Grover ordered pizza, five guys delivered the pizza (which made it suspect in the first place), Jordan ate the pizza, and at 2 a.m. he was doubled up in pain with food poisoning.
In light of the recent disclosure about Jordan’s food poisoning, the current Chicago Bulls would do well to pay attention to the following tips.
First, try to finish all eating before room service shuts down and, if you’re hungry after that, then buy and eat only pre-packaged foods from vending machines or supermarkets.
Second, all-night diners and pizza joints are probably no-nos.
Third, a personal traveling cook may prove to be a worthwhile investment.
Icon that he is, Jordan has taught us many basketball court lessons, but who would have thought that even today he is still teaching. The lesson? Be aware of rival fans in other cities and be especially careful about who handles your food.
Hollie M. Woods is a writer for Rant Sports covering the Chicago Bulls and the NBA.