In 2011 McCallum visited some of the Dream Teamers, including Clyde Drexler who weighed in on his strong feelings about Magic Johnson receiving “special treatment” due to his diagnosis. After learning he was HIV-positive Magic left the game of basketball before the 1991 NBA season but he came back for the 1992 NBA All-Star Game, where he would win MVP. He also kept his spot on the Dream Team. Here’s what Clyde is quoted as saying in McCallum’s book:
“Magic was always”¦” And Drexler goes into a decent Magic impression: “˜Come on, Clyde, come on, Clyde, get with me, get with me,’ and making all that noise. And, really, he couldn’t play much by that time. He couldn’t guard his shadow.”
“But you have to have to understand what was going on then. Everybody kept waiting for Magic to die. Every time he’d run up the court everybody would feel sorry for the guy, and he’d get all that benefit of the doubt. Magic came across like, “˜All this is my stuff.’ Really? Get outta here, dude. He was on the declining end of his career.”
Drexler had played exquisitely in the 1992 All-Star Game in Orlando, although the MVP award eventually went to Magic, who had been added by Commissioner Stern as a special thirteenth player to the Western Conference roster. “If we all knew Magic was going to live this long, I would’ve gotten the MVP of that game, and Magic probably wouldn’t have made the Olympic team.”
If this is exactly what Clyde said and if this is true, we wonder what other players may have felt the same way.