On Sunday, the first two episodes of The Last Dance premiered, laying the groundwork for the 10-part retelling of Jordan’s storied career and his famed Chicago Bulls basketball squad.
While fans tuned in for the highly anticipated look into the NBA legend’s life, a chunk of the social media chatter surrounding the broadcast had to do with the 44th president’s title listed in the series.
When Obama, 58, appeared in The Last Dance, speaking about Jordan’s star power and influence in the 1990s, a lower-third identifier under his name jokingly read “former Chicago resident” — perhaps not the most obvious of descriptors for the two-term commander in chief.
“Donald Trump has so royally f—d the reputation of being called President of the United States that Barack Obama was like ‘nah, I’m just a former Chicago resident,’ ” one person quipped on Twitter, as another wrote, “Calling Obama a ‘former Chicago resident’ is quite the understatement.”
“My new goal in life is to meet the person who decided Barack Obama would be ‘Former Chicago Resident,’ ” tweeted another viewer.
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In November 2016, Obama honored Jordan, 57, with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, calling the retired athlete “more than just the best player on the two greatest teams of all time.”
“There is a reason you call someone ‘the Michael Jordan of’ — Michael Jordan of neurosurgery, or the Michael Jordan of rabbis, or the Michael Jordan of outrigger canoeing — and they know what you’re talking about,” Obama said at the time. “Because Michael Jordan is the Michael Jordan of greatness.”
Obama added: “He is the definition of somebody so good at what they do that everybody recognizes them. That’s pretty rare.”
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The Last Dance takes a deep dive into the 1997-1998 Bulls, which saw the team enter the NBA season as two-time defending champions. Despite their success, it would be the last time the team’s core players, such as Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Steve Kerr, Dennis Rodman and coach Phil Jackson, would all be together.
More than 100 people close to Jordan and the team were interviewed for the series.
New episodes of The Last Dance air Sundays at 9 and 10 p.m. ET on ESPN and ESPN2 through May 17.