M.L. Carr recounts offering 1st-round pick for rights to just talk to a retired Michael Jordan

By WEEI 93.7

M.L. Carr didn't watch the wildly-popular documentary "The Last Dance" which chronicled Michael Jordan's run with the Bulls.

If he did there might be some disappointment one very interesting nugget was left out.

Appearing on OMF with Glenn Ordway, Lou Merloni and Christian Fauria, Carr recounted when as a Celtics executive he called then-Bulls general manager Jerry Krause after the1993-94seasonto propose an unusual scenario: The Celtics would send Chicago a first-round pick just for the right to talk to the recently-retired Jordan.

"If you ask me I can tell you exactly what happened," Carr explained. "If you asked Jerry Krause, Jerry Krause said that it never happened and he never got that call which was absolutely not true.

"I called Jerry knowing that I knew Michael from the time he was a kid. Matter of fact his parents lived about a mile and a half from my parents. So I had known the family all my life. So I figured I’ve known Michael walked away from the game I bet I could talk him in. I thought I had an angle and the angle would be that you’ve done all the things that you’ve done in a Chicago uniform. Can you imagine the marketing opportunities if you came to Boston and you won championships in Boston on top of what you did in Chicago? It would be a financial bonanza for you. I said, ‘Jerry, I will give you a first-round pick just for the right to talk to him. If I can’t convince him to do it then you’ve picked up a first-round pick.’ I understand why Jerry went back and said it never happened simply because of the fact that you tell me you turned down a first-round pick just for the rights to talk to him.

"He said it didn’t happen but it absolutely happened."

Carr was hoping to get Jordan to play on a team that included Dominque Wilkins, who spent the 1994-95 season with the Celtics. The Bulls icon -- who had left basketball to play baseball after the 1992-93 season -- did come back and play at the tail-end of that '94-95 campaign with Chicago.

The story did, of course, circle back to Jordan.

"Michael thought it was a joke," Carr said."I guess Mike said to some of the media, ‘What is M.L. doing? What is he up to?’ He never questioned what he did because Michael knew I was being truthful about that. It did happen. We were reaching all kinds of straws at that time. I figured if we got him or we got Tim Duncan, well, it would be great. I didn’t have to pay a big price with Michael but it was an incredible price to try and get Tim Duncan, to be honest."

(Carr would go on to coach a Celtics team that won just 15 games in order to have the best odds for the No. 1 pick in the 1997 NBA Draft, which was when San Antonio ultimately selected Duncan.)