Open Floor: SI's NBA Show

Open Floor: SI's NBA Show

Sports Illustrated
May 29, 2020 1 hr 6 min

Playoff format overload, scoring champ title winners

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open by running through this week's developments regarding the potential format of the 2019-20 resumed NBA season. Why is Adam Silver even bothering with World Cup group stage and expanded playoff proposals? What advice would Ben and Michael offer to the commissioner? Did Damian Lillard have a point when he threatened to sit out if the Blazers can't play meaningful games? Should the NBA cater its proposal to the intense fan interest in Zion Williamson? From there, Ben and Michael take questions from the Open Floor Globe. Who will be the next player to win a scoring title and the NBA championship in the same year? And why did a new mother laugh at Michael's lack of pain tolerance? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
May 28, 2020 1 hr 3 min

Jack McCallum on Michael Jordan and the 1992 Dream Team

Ben Golliver is joined by legendary basketball writer Jack McCallum to discuss his new podcast project, "The Dream Team Tapes." Which Michael Jordan story does Jack wish he could have told on "The Last Dance"? How did Jack prepare to cover USA Basketball's 1992 team and how did he forge relationships with Jordan, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, and Charles Barkley? What was Christian Laettner's life like in Barcelona? Which player on that team has become the most underrated by history? Who should have replaced Laettner during the roster selection process? Why did Jack develop a soft spot for Portland after covering the Tournament of Americas? What does he make of the state of USA Basketball in 2020? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
May 26, 2020 1 hr 10 min

The NBA's return plans: the good, bad and ugly

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina dig through the NBA's first official steps towards a resumption of the 2019-20 season. Do they like Disney World as a host? How many teams should be invited? How should the playoffs be formatted and seeded? If they were players, would they participate? As reporters, would they attend and cover the events in person? Will there be an asterisk? From there, they shift gears to take questions from the Open Floor Globe. Which GMs could make a name for themselves this offseason? Could the Spurs dynasty carry a "Last Dance" documentary? What about Kevin Durant? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
May 22, 2020 1 hr 24 min

Closing thoughts on The Last Dance, Michael Jordan, the Pacers and the Jazz

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina conclude their coverage of "The Last Dance" by taking questions from the Open Floor Globe. Should this project be considered a documentary? How should Jordan be viewed as a player and leader? What was the project missing? What do Jordan's narrative successes tell us about the Warriors dynasty? What's the signature MJ game? Was the "Flu Game" story believable? What legacy do Reggie Miller's Pacers leave? Did John Stockton and Karl Malone get shortchanged? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
May 19, 2020 1 hr 8 min

Michael Jordan didn't want the Bulls dynasty to end

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina discuss the key revelation of the final two episodes of "The Last Dance": That Michael Jordan wanted to run things back with the Chicago Bulls during the 1998-99 season on one-year contracts. Does Jordan's vision of how that would work make sense? What, exactly, was Jerry Krause's take? How about Phil Jackson? Scottie Pippen? Owner Jerry Reinsdorf? If the Bulls had returned with Jordan and Pippen in a lockout year, could they have reached the 1999 NBA Finals and beaten the San Antonio Spurs? From there, Ben and Michael reassess their favorite Jordan seasons and moments after watching the 10-hour series. Then, they take questions from the Open Floor Globe. Did this documentary help Jordan win the 2020 NBA title? Will storytelling and narrative become an even bigger part of the discussion of great players as we move forward in the modern media environment? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
May 15, 2020 1 hr 8 min

Being Michael Jordan's teammate, more NBA quitters

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina begin their latest recap of "The Last Dance" by asking how they would survive as Michael Jordan's teammate. Would Ben take the bullying without responding? Would Michael walk off the job? Then, they ponder whether Steve Kerr truly believes getting punched was the best thing that happened to his relationship with Jordan, break down Gary Payton's memorable cameo and show love to B.J. Armstrong. After making their predictions for the series' final two episodes, they shift gears to take more listener nominations for the NBA's biggest quitters. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
May 12, 2020 1 hr 9 min

Scottie Pippen's sit down & the biggest quitters in NBA history

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina look back at Scottie Pippen's decision to sit out the closing seconds of a 1994 playoff game against the New York Knicks. Was Pippen guilty of a cardinal sporting sin? What context helps explain his sit down? Could the same situation play out in today's NBA? From there, Ben and Michael pivot to a wider discussion of the NBA's biggest quitters? Does changing teams in free agency make you a quitter? What about retiring early? Were Michael Jordan, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant and Kevin Durant guilty of quitting at various points of their careers? And what did Cedric Ceballos, Dwight Howard, Rajon Rondo and Andrew Bynum do to make the list? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
May 08, 2020 1 hr 14 min

Michael Jordan comes up short on politics & gambling, top under-25 duos

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina break down the latest episodes of "The Last Dance" by dissecting Michael Jordan's shaky defenses of his gambling habit and lack of interest in politics. Should the documentary have approached the issue of gambling addiction with more nuance? Did Jordan have an obligation to embrace his potential as an activist? Is Jordan truly apolitical or is he worried that people won't like his politics? From there, Michael shares some of his favorite scenes from the documentary -- including the Toni Kukoc beef at the Olympics -- and what's jumping off the screen for his wife. Then, Ben and Michael shift gears to take questions from the Open Floor Globe on where top European players of the past would be drafted in 2020 and which NBA teams possess the best under-25 duos. They close with updates from a mail carrier and a basketball fanatic from overseas. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
May 05, 2020 1 hr 18 min

Michael Jordan's most tortured opponents, NBA shutdown fall-offs and bounce-backs

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina open by arguing about an age-old question: Who was Michael Jordan's most tortured opponent? Charles Barkley or Patrick Ewing? From there, they discuss the impact that the coronavirus shutdown could have on aging players. Which veterans might enter a different stage of their careers by the time basketball is back? Kyle Lowry? Chris Paul? PJ Tucker? Dwight Howard? On the flip side, which players are poised for bounce-back seasons after the extra time off? Ben and Michael close with a discussion of Marvin Bagley III and Aaron Gordon, two younger players in need of a boost. Will Bagley fulfill his all-star potential? Is it time to give up on Gordon? And, more importantly, can Gordon rap? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit
May 01, 2020 1 hr 19 min

Bad Boys revisited, the real Dennis Rodman, 2020 expansion draft

Ben Golliver and Michael Pina review episodes 3 and 4 of "The Last Dance" by digging into the rivalry between the Bulls and Pistons. Did Isiah Thomas deserve Michael Jordan's hate? Are the Bad Boys overrated, underrated or properly rated? Could Dennis Rodman's late-blooming career arc have happened in the modern NBA? Was his Las Vegas trip really indicative of who he was as a Bulls player? From there, they shift gears to conduct a 2020 expansion draft. What would Ben and Michael name their teams if they were the owners? Where would the teams play? And what would their starting lineups look like if each current NBA team was able to protect 3 players and they could draft from the rest of the pool? Learn more about your ad choices. Visit