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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

The guy who made Michael Jordan’s “flu game” pizza stands by his pie

Illustration for article titled The guy who made Michael Jordan’s “flu game” pizza stands by his pie
Photo: Brian Bahr (Getty Images)

ESPN’s The Last Dance features so many amazing moments from the career of Michael Jordan, but the discussion of a bad pizza the NBA star ate during the 1997 finals is somehow causing the most controversy. For years, the official story was that Jordan came down with the flu before game five against the Utah Jazz and, despite being dehydrated and woozy, he somehow rallied the team to a 90-88 victory.


However, in the final episode of The Last Dance, Jordan and his entourage reveal that the real culprit was a potentially poisoned pizza from a Park City chain restaurant. The man who made that pizza begs to differ.

“I followed all the rules,” said Craig Fite, a former Pizza Hut assistant manager and self-professed Bulls fan, on a Salt Lake City radio show.

He emphatically denies any attempt to make Michael Jordan sick with the thin, crispy pepperoni pizza his store delivered to the superstar’s hotel room. “I remember saying this: ‘I will make the pizza, because I don’t want any of you doing anything to it.’ And then I told the driver, you’re going to take me there,” Fite continues.

“It’s tough to get food poisoning off a pizza unless of course you add something to it,” he added, “but that didn’t happen because sure as heck it didn’t leave my hands.”

He also refutes the claim made by Jordan’s friend and personal assistant George Koehler that five people showed up to deliver the pizza. “There was two of us,” Fite says. “I didn’t even have that many people working at the time at the store.” He goes on to describe seeing Jordan sitting a table playing cards in the room and getting a brief “Thanks, man” from his basketball idol before the door was unceremoniously shut in his face.

It seems whatever really happened to Michael Jordan’s intestinal tract that night will continue to stay a mystery. However, whether he was suffering from the flu, pepperoni-induced food poisoning, or just a good old-fashioned hangover, we can all agree the man played an insane game of basketball.

[via High Snobiety]

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