The Orlando Magic will honor Horace Grant during their game against the Charlotte Bobcats tonight as part of the teams 25th anniversary “Legend Nights.” “The General” as he was known around the league played 17 years in the NBA, including 2 stints with the Orlando Magic. He helped the team reach the 1995 NBA Finals and will always be remembered fondly for his trademark blue goggles he wore on the court.
Grant’s career began in 1987 when he was drafted by the Chicago Bulls. Check out the broadcast video from that night:
He formed a big three with Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen, winning three NBA titles. Check out coach Phil Jackson describe Grant’s militaristic approach to the game. Helps explain where the “General” nickname came from and his hard-work blue-collar reputation:
He was a beast down low with a surprisingly effective jump shot. Watch him destroy the Pacers when he was with the Bulls:
His arrival in Orlando marked a turning point for the franchise. He helped a young Shaq and Penny combo lead the team to the 1995 NBA Finals where they faced off against the Houston Rockets. He had a great series, but it wasn’t enough to win Orlando’s first championship:
Once Michael Jordan unretired, it sparked a heated rivalry between the Magic and Grant’s old team. Watch the once loyal Chicago fans rip into Grant after a poor game and injury during the 1996 NBA playoffs:
His hard style of play made a few enemies around the league. Here is a video of Rocket’s coach Kevin McHale ripping into Grant without prompting. He says he has “no testis, no balls” but every Orlando Magic fan knows that isn’t true.
What do you think? Does Horace Grant get his due? Let us know in the comments section below, and if you’re on twitter tonight, let’s try to get #goggles trending!