With the NBA season suspended amid coronavirus concerns around the world, plenty of basketball fans have been asking, or rather begging, ESPN to release “The Last Dance,” a documentary series covering Michael Jordan’s final season with the Bulls.
The documentary features never-before-seen footage from Chicago’s 1997-98 championship campaign, including interviews with Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Phil Jackson and other key members of the Bulls’ dynasty. It is also spread out over 10 parts, which is hardly a problem considering it could be months before NBA teams return to action.
But will ESPN move up the release date to take advantage of the gap in the sports calendar? Here are the latest details on “The Last Dance” and when it will be available to watch.
‘The Last Dance’ release date on ESPN
“The Last Dance” is set to premiere on Tuesday, June 2. The 10-part series will be played on ABC and ESPN.
Could ESPN move up the Michael Jordan documentary release?
A recent ESPN advertisement for “The Last Dance” fueled speculation about a new release date. The promo said “coming soon” instead of “coming in June.”
Unfortunately for those who have already carved out serious couch time for “The Last Dance,” the documentary isn’t ready just yet.
“Overall, any original content project that we can conceivably move up, we are obviously considering that, including films,” ESPN programming executive Burke Magnus said in a Q&A session. “I know some have asked about ‘The Last Dance’ and the reality is that the production of that film has not yet been completed, so we are limited there at the moment.
“Obviously, you can’t air it until it’s done.”
That’s a fair point, Burke.
For now, it appears ESPN is stuck with its initial June release date until it receives a final cut of “The Last Dance.” Only then could the network re-evaluate its options and potentially give hoop heads what they want.
What will ‘The Last Dance’ cover?
During the 1997-98 NBA season, a film crew was given access to follow the Bulls as they chased a second three-peat. “The Last Dance” reveals how Jordan and the Bulls captured their sixth NBA championship — and details all of the drama that surrounded one of the greatest dynasties in sports history.
With so many Jordan highlights and stories available online, viewers could be wondering if “The Last Dance” will simply rehash previous works. For any skeptics out there, this documentary does feel different.
Here is a sample of the exclusive footage used from an old cut of “The Last Dance” showing how Jordan could shatter the confidence of teammates. It’s only a small taste of what ESPN may have pulled from the vault in addition to new interviews.
ESPN’s ‘The Last Dance’ trailer
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