As the epitome of the sporting and basketball world, Michael Jordan would be amiss if he didn’t afford certain luxuries.

However, a Nike designer straight-up refusing his request probably wasn’t on MJ’s bingo card.

But, that is the exact scenario he found himself in, during his first interaction with his namesake, Michael DiTullo.

In a conversation on The Way of Product podcast, the visionary designer would reveal his unfortunate, albeit hilarious, experience interacting with the Chicago Bulls legend.

via Imago

Michael DiTullo has made a name for himself for his truly innovative styles. As a result, his journey spans from names like Nike’s Air Jordan to Frog Design and his brought him to the mountaintop of industrial designs.

During his pit stop for the sports apparel leader, Nike, he would design a specific kind of bag. While he was wear-testing it, Michael Jordan asked about the bag. “I get the first one of everything, right?” But, DiTullo did not want to give such a torn-up version to the 6x NBA Champion. “This one is a prototype, though. It’s all messed up, and I’ve been wear-testing it.”

Jordan wasn’t one to toil around. “So, I can’t have the bag?” But, Michael DiTullo, like his namesake, was just as stubborn. “‘No,  I’ll get you one.’ You know, trying to remember to treat him like an equal, I was like, ‘I can’t. I’m not going to give you this one, it’s all messed up. I’ll give you like a good one,’” the designer recalled.

Despite Jordan’s repeated insistence, going so far as to claim, “So, you’re telling me I can’t have the bag with my own name on it?” the designer was unmoved. Instead, he continued to deny the former owner of the Charlotte Hornets access to the bag. But, what was so special about this bag in particular?

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The bag between Michael DiTullo and Michael Jordan

When first on the come-up at Nike, DiTullo designed the bag as a joke dare. Looking at the Air-Jordan 3, he came up with the drawing and design as a joke. But, the beauty of it impressed executives so much that a major 100,000-piece order was placed immediately.

To test the efficacy of his creation, DiTullo was testing out the bag. As it was raining and his laptop was still with him, giving the bag to the 5x NBA MVP became a rather tough ask of him. While he did deny Michael Jordan, it became a fascinating story for the Hall of Famer to tell his friends.

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