"He came up to me.... I was talking all types of trash" - Grant Hill reminisces going back and forth with Michael Jordan about Duke-UNC rivalry during NBA 75 event

During the 2022 NBA All-Star Game, Grant Hill had a moment with Jordan.
During the 2022 NBA All-Star Game, Grant Hill had a moment with Jordan.
Johnnie Martinez

During a significant season in the rivalry between the Duke Blue Devils and UNC Tar Heels, Grant Hill trash-talked Michael Jordan.

The UNC-Duke rivalry is considered one of the top rivalries in sports, let alone in college basketball. The two schools are separated by 10 miles and have had several basketball legends play for them.

From time to time, the two school's alumni and former players will still trash talk one another, despite leaving the programs long ago. Former Duke player Grant Hill told the story of trash-talking UNC alumni Michael Jordan during the NBA 75 event.

Hill spoke about running into Jordan backstage at the event during an interview on "The Rich Eisen Show." The NBA 75th Anniversary team was honored during the 2022 NBA All-Star Game, and Hill spoke with Jordan backstage. Hill said:

"No, he didn't reach out, but I saw him in Cleveland at the NBA 75. As they were coming off and in the back, in the hallway, he came up to me.
"Duke, we had just beat them in Carolina and blew them out, and you know we blew them out maybe a couple, maybe a week before, so I was talking all types of trash."

On February 5, Duke beat UNC by 20 points to win 87-67, much to the delight of many Blue Devils fans. While Grant Hill was talking trash, Michael Jordan tried to come back, but Hill still had a rebuttal. Hill said:

"I was in his face. ... You know I'm giving it to him, and he's like, 'Man, you weren't talking trash when, you know, when we were good.'
"I said yes, I was talking trash because when you guys were good, we were good too, you know. So we were going back and forth in the hallway."

Grant Hill trash-talked Jordan at the NBA 75 event, but that was not the last time their teams met. UNC spoiled the final game of Duke coach Mike Krzyzewski's career 94-81 on March 5. The Tar Heels also topped the Blue Devils 81-77 in the national semifinals on April 2.


Grant Hill and Michael Jordan's trash-talking is part of an elite rivalry between North Carolina and Duke

Iconic rivals Duke and UNC would meet two more times that season.
Iconic rivals Duke and UNC would meet two more times that season.

When Grant Hill spoke with Michael Jordan during All-Star weekend, Duke was one of the best teams in college basketball. Still, the two former members of the rival schools' teams went back and forth. However, Hill acknowledged the respect of the rivalry, saying:

"So that rivalry, although there's an incredible amount of mutual respect, we definitely like to talk trash."

While Hill may like to trash talk with Michael Jordan and other UNC Tar Heels, they now have the ultimate comeback in the rivalry.

That's got to be the sweetest win for either side of a rivalry - and most painful loss for the other side - that I've seen in my lifetime. UNC fans basically have an argument-ending atom bomb for life. Lifetime ownership unless Duke beats them in a national title game.

Michael Jordan and any other Tar Heels can cite the biggest win in the history of the rivalry as a trump card.

Edited by Adam Dickson


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