A Utah man is challenging the allegation made by Michael Jordan's trainer Tim Grover that his "Flu Game" was actually due to food poisoning from pizza delivered to the hotel. After the final episode of The Last Dance, former Pizza Hut employee Craig Fite claimed on Facebook that he was the one who made and personally delivered the pizza that Jordan received that fateful night before Game 5 of 1997 NBA Finals, otherwise known as "The Flu Game." Fite appeared on The Big Show on 1280 The Zone in Salt Lake City to deliver his account of what happened.
Fite, a self-proclaimed Chicago Bulls fan, claims that since everyone knew that the team had been staying at the Park City Marriott for the Finals, he wanted to be the one who handled the order of a large, thin and crispy pizza with extra pepperoni that was assumed to be for one of the players. Fite said he followed all the food prep guidelines, and went with the driver to ensure safe delivery.
"I said, 'Well, I’m delivering it,'" Fite said. "I remember saying this: 'I will make the pizza, because I don't want any of you doing anything to it.' And then I told the driver, you’re going to take me there."
After checking in at the front desk of the hotel, Fite said that he and the driver were the only people who went up to the floor where the Bulls players were being held. This account differs from Grover's, who said in the docuseries that "five guys" arrived, drawing suspicions about the pizza that Jordan ordered. "As soon as the [elevator] door opened, it was like I got punched in the face with cigar smoke," Fite recalls.
Fite said he asked to say hello to Jordan, and Grover obliged, opening the door wide enough for him to get a peek at MJ, who looked up from his card game to say, "Thanks, man." Again, this detail doesn't align with what Grover said about closing the door, and thinking to himself, "I have a bad feeling about this." Since Fite claims to be the one who handled Jordan's pizza that night, he's upset over the accusation that the "Flu Game" was all his doing.
"Did you get it diagnosed? Did you go to the doctor? All this is innuendo on their part," Fite said. "One thing I remind everybody is, he was smoking so many cigars. They had windows open. He didn’t have a shirt on or he was in a tank top. At around 3 or 4 o'clock in the afternoon in Park City, the sun is gone behind that mountain so it gets colder up there."
Jalen Rose isn't quite buying the tampered pizza story either, saying on the latest episode of the Load Management podcast that adult beverages, cigars, and late-night munchies do not mix. Rose believes that Jordan spit on the pizza to ensure that no one else would eat it.
Listen below to Fite's account below.