A 3-Point Shot that Changes History
It is an honor for me to interview my dearest friend and client, Trent Tucker in regard to a shot he made that changed NBA history on a very special day. Oh what a game. I remember it well as I was sitting in the seats of former NY Knicks star Charles Oakley, which were located behind the Knicks bench and it was a very exciting game down to the last .3 tenths of a second on the clock. It was MLK day and what better way to spend the day but at Madison Square Garden watching the Knicks play Michael Jordan and his Bulls.
MJ Pedone: I know you remember that game as if you just played in it yesterday. Can you take us back to the final seconds of the game?
Trent Tucker: I can remember the game like it was yesterday. It was the first season they went to tenths of seconds on the game clock. The play designed was an alley-oop pass for Patrick Ewing. I was used as the decoy to empty out the backside hoping that Michael Jordan would follow me. Because he such a smart player, he read the play and we didn’t have a back up option. So I ran along the sideline and Mark Jackson gave me a little flip pass; I caught the ball and shot it as quickly as I could…and the rest is history.
MJ Pedone: I remember the crowd exploding. What were you thinking after you made that shot?
Trent Tucker: My first and only thought was to get off the court as quickly as we could so they couldn’t bring us back or replay that possession.
MJ Pedone: I know MJ and a few others had some words for you heading to the locker room. Care to share any?
Trent Tucker: They just said it was a great shot and a great win for the team.
MJ Pedone: The Bulls protested that shot. What was the outcome?
Trent Tucker: After further review, the shot counted and we won the game. They changed the rule the following season.
MJ: Talk to us about the Trent Tucker Rule.
Trent Tucker: The Trent Tucker Rule is a basketball rule that disallows any regular shot to be taken on the court if the ball is put into play with less than three-tenths of a second left on the game or shot clock. The rule was passed after the 1989-90 season due to the shot I made against the Bulls that season. There has to be .03 seconds or more on the shot/game clock in order to be able to catch and shoot the ball.
MJ Pedone: Lets fast-forward to the final year that you played in the NBA with the Chicago Bulls. Did your Bulls teammates ever say anything about that shot once you joined their team?
Trent Tucker: Michael Jordan said, “You know that shot didn’t count.” We laughed about it.
MJ Pedone: Bring us back to when you won the championship.
Trent Tucker: Winning the championship was one of best days of my life. I can go on, but we would need a few hours.
MJ Pedone: Obviously, I have the privilege of working with you on a daily basis. Can you let the world know the many great things you are doing post NBA career?
Trent Tucker: I have always been involved in philanthropy and started my nonprofit in 1998 in which we support underprivileged youth. The All 4 Kids Foundation is a 501(c)(3) committed to educating at-risk youth academically, personally, socially and physically through a curriculum that expands their horizons and encourages them to participate in new areas of learning. Our mission includes striving to develop the whole students mind so that they have the tools to make decisions that are intellectual, moral and ethical. In 2001, The Trent Tucker University Scholars Program was implemented in the University of Minnesota and has been adopted by Columbia University and will begin this spring. I also lend my time to other organizations in order to raise awareness and funds that will benefit children who are in need. I enjoy speaking on a national level at corporations, being a mentor for both youth and adult programs and hosting fundraising events in order to bring awareness to my educational programs. I have a great team that I work with in Minneapolis and of course you and your team at Indra Public Relations in NYC, who I work with daily. I have been blessed in so many ways and will always continue to give back.
MJ Pedone: Thank you for your time and reliving such a historical day with us.
Trent Tucker: My pleasure.