Entering the 1992-1993 season, the Chicago Bulls had won two consecutive championships. But as they sought their first three-peat, the future of the dynasty was in doubt.
RAY CLAY – Bulls PA announcer
From Clemson… 6’10"…
BRIAN URLACHER – Hair Spokesman
Number 54, it’s iconic. I was just trying to carry on what he started in Chicago.
DWYANE WADE – Former Chicago Bull
The only reason I played basketball is because of those teams. Everyone wanted to be like Horace.
… Horace Grant!
QUEEN ELIZABETH II – British lady
Philip and I used to fight over who could be the Bulls in NBA Jam. You know how many games I won with him? Horace and Scottie were unstoppable.
BOB COSTAS – Has a Beatles haircut
The Bulls were looking for an identity. The 1987 draft was really the turning point.
JERRY REINSDORF – Traded Sammy Sosa
Horace comes up to me and says he would like to be selected by the Bulls. And I ask around the league and everyone I talked to said he’s blind. So I’m like, whatever, let’s draft him, that’s how we do things here.
JERRY KRAUSE – Real-life Voldemort
Don’t get me wrong, I wished he was 7’1" and could see, but we thought he would be good.
MICHAEL WILBON – Former Trustee, Northwestern University
Earlier in the draft they took Scott Pippen. Combined with Michael Jordan, the Bulls had the original Big Three.
PHIL JACKSON – Former New Jersey Nets Assistant Coach
Horace was a great student of the game. He always sat up front when we watched tape or went over plays.
HORACE GRANT – Legend
I always sat up front because I couldn’t read the board. So in 1990, I went in for a checkup and the doctor told me he had some bad news. I was 20-40 in one eye, 20-80. I was legally blind. Those words changed my life. I went to LensCrafters and got a pair of goggles.
DAVID STERN – Fashion Czar
Kareem wore them. But after he retired in ’89, the no one took that throne. That is, until Horace.
Up until that point I had just been trying to get close enough to the basket so I could see the rim and shoot. Then I started noticing things. The three-point line. The square on the backboard. Muggsy Bogues. It was incredible.
MICHAEL JORDAN – Restauranteur
I remember we were playing in Seattle, and I was golfing with Benoit Benjamin that afternoon. I told him to watch out for Horace Grant. And Benoit goes, “What? He’s legally blind.” And I tell him, “Just wait.”
I knew Horace was going to wear goggles, but I was expecting some trendy giant wireframes. But he comes out wearing these thick white goggles unlike anything I’ve seen before. And you know what? He had a great game that night. The rest is history.
All the sudden you’re seeing kids playing good D, hustling for rebounds, boxing out. Kids are putting on goggles and suddenly they’re reading. In 1991 the most popular children’s book was Moby-Dick. He was a phenomenon.
I remember Jerry pulled me aside one day, right after I started wearing the goggles.
I asked him, “If I gave you ten goggles, and nine goggles would help you see, but one would kill you, would you wear the goggles?”
I said, “No.”
KEVIN GARNETT – Actor
Those goggles, they were just cool. The white ones, the black ones, I even had the red ones. People would line up all night to get them. They would get sold for hundreds of dollars the next day.
KANYE WEST – Wyoming Resident
Remember when I was wearing shutter shades? That was all because of Horace. We’re talking about a fashion icon.
LEBRON JAMES – High school basketball superfan
Horace was good for 14 and 9 every night. He always knew what the score was and how much time was left on the clock. That’s the perfect teammate.
As soon as I started wearing them, we started winning championships.
It was Horacemania.
Cuts to old footage of Horace Grant preparing for an interview in Paris:
FRENCH AUDIO TECHNICIAN: Will you sign my goggles?
GRANT: Of course! I would never just ignore you and make it unbearably uncomfortable for anyone watching, I’m a human being too.
In 1991 and 1992, Horace and his goggles led the Bulls to two championships. By 1993, people started wondering how much longer they could keep it together.
Michael started making us play pepper before games. I was thinking about LASIK. It felt like the end of an era.
The Bulls played the Suns in the 1993 NBA Finals. With the Bulls leading the Series 3-2, the Suns had a two-point lead with 14.1 seconds left in Game 6.
JAY-Z – Sports Agent
Game 6, that’s legendary. Whenever I rap about it, I’m trying to channel Horace.
STEVE KERR – Former Broadcaster
The Pass. Where do I start. Horace cuts to the hoop and looks like he’s going to go up for the lay-up to tie the game, but he throws an absolute dime to John Paxson who hits the wide-open three to put them ahead. It was the perfect ending.
I played golf with Cedric Ceballos that morning. I told him, “You better watch out, Horace is going to make a nice pass tonight.”
CHARLES BARKLEY – Former SNL host
Everyone asks me about Game 6. You couldn’t write a better script. To make that pass to Paxson and then block that shot? That’s both ends of the court. We couldn’t believe it. That’s how legends are made.
KEVIN JOHNSON – Politician
We got the ball back after The Pass with three seconds left. I was going up for the shot and I was thinking, this is great, I’m going to win the game now. And then Horace comes out of nowhere and blocks the shot. I never even saw it, just a blur of light reflecting off his goggles.
We won our third championship in a row. But I started to feel like I wasn’t appreciated enough.
People who wear glasses in organizations win titles, not players who wear glasses.
SCOTTIE PIPPEN – Gravely Underpaid Professional Athlete
You know how much he made with the Bulls? He made $6,638,500 for six years. If I were him, I would have got LASIK in the middle of a close game. I don’t blame him for leaving.
Once Horace signed with Orlando, the magic was gone. I was heartbroken. He was NBA All-Defensive Second Team twice! How could they let him go?
I got LASIK. But I kept wearing the goggles as inspiration for the kids. I still get people telling me they wore goggles because of me.
Everyone debates who is the greatest. Lebron has three rings. Horace has got four. The numbers speak for themselves.