LOS ANGELES – One is a basketball Hall of Famer and a Lakers legend. The other’s basketball act is just beginning. As a four-time MVP graduating with Marlborough High’s class of 2020.
Sunday night, both basketball minds were connected - connected through the story of Michael Jordan.
“I was one of the first to know Michael and see his talent in the raw,” said James Worthy, one of Jordan’s teammate before he was a superstar in college at North Carolina.
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Big Game James is featured in The Last Dance, ESPN’s highly anticipated 10-part documentary on his airiness.
“Anytime there’s something surrounding Michael Jordan, I get a call because I have first-hand information. You know I was there at the beginning and saw him flourish in the NBA as well,” Worthy added.
Seventeen-year-old Parker Montgomery is too young to have watched MJ play live. But by the age of five, she was ready to follow his footsteps.
“Me and my dad went to the Foot Locker and I needed some new basketball shoes. So I picked out these black and pink ones, and my dad was like ‘oh those are Jordan’s,'" Parker said. “I was like, ‘Jordan – who?'”
She quickly learned the answer to that question when she discovered the trove of MJ highlights available on YouTube.
“I was like this guy’s got serious game,” said Parker.
Now, Marlborough’s all-time leading scorer will graduate as one of the most decorated players in school history. Earning herself a full ride scholarship to play for UC San Diego.
Her name’s already in Marlborough’s hall of fame. She didn’t get there without playing like Mike.
“He always said whenever he went out on the court he was gonna win no matter what,” Parker said. “Cause when I go on the court I’m going for everyone’s head. I don’t care who you are. If you think you’re better than me if you’re not, I’m gonna go out how here and show you what I can do.”
Both Parker and Worthy know how important Jordan’s last dance is during this time of life without live sports.
“By bringing this documentary, it really, really helps people to heal," said Worthy. "Give them something to be happy about and can elevate their hearts."
“It’s like he’s still in the game, and we’re participating in his game,” added Parker.
For Big Game James, it’s reliving history. For Montgomery, it’s taking notes for her future.
But for sports fans everywhere, it’s a last dance everyone needs.