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Who Was Gus Lett? Michael Jordan's 'second Father' Tragically Died Of Cancer In 2000

Who was Gus Lett? One story highlighted in the finale episodes of the documentary reveals Jordan's motivation to win the 1998 Finals Game against Pacers.

who was gus lett

Michael Jordan's docu-series The Last Dance made sure to show how Jordan drew motivation to win while playing for the Chicago Bulls. One story highlighted in the final episodes of the documentary reveals Jordan's motivation to win the 1998 Finals Game 7 against the Indiana Pacers – Michael Jordan's security guard Gus Lett. Lett's mention in the documentary caused fans to ask 'who was Gus Lett' on Twitter along with questions about the Gus Lett death, Gus Lett obituary and the Michael Jordan security team. Here are the answers to the questions 'when did Gus Lett die', Gus Lett obituary and 'who was Gus Lett'.

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Who was Gus Lett? How did Gus Lett death help Jordan win the 1998 game versus Indiana Pacers?

For their sixth NBA title, the Bulls had to face the Larry Bird-coached Pacers team, which Jordan had admitted was the toughest team they had faced in the Eastern Conference apart from the Detroit Pistons. While the Bulls were playing the series, Jordan's bodyguard and his father figure Gus Lett was diagnosed with cancer. Gus Lett was seemingly much more than a security member for him, and his illness became the motivation Jordan needed to eliminate the Reggie Miller-led Pacers. 

Michael Jordan explains 'who was Gus Lett' in The Last Dance

During his interview in The Last Dance, Jordan recalled his time with Lett. As per Jordan, there were many people who thought they were entitled to things, but Lett was the one who 'put them straight'. He referred to Lett as his 'protector', but also someone who became more than that. Jordan revealed that Lett became a father figure for him after his father's death and he needed to have him next to him everywhere he went. 

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Michael and I talk all the time,” Lett explained to the Chicago Tribune in an interview. “Probably twice a week we will talk. We talk about my health. He is encouraging me to keep fighting. And he keeps telling me that it’s going to be all right, which I know it will be. The doctors tell me I’m on the good side of (cancer prognosis). The tumours are gone. And I am going through chemotherapy now.”

Also read | Michael Jordan security team: John Wozniak from the Michael Jordan security team reveals incredible stories in The Last Dance

Gus Lett death: Who was Gus Lett?

Michael Jordan hired Gus Lett along with John Michael Wozniak and Clarence Travis when he left to play baseball. The three of them were considered Jordan's closest people. He started working as a guard after working in the narcotics department. Jordan referred to Lett as a positive influence on him, stating that when he looks at Lett, 'the game really doesn’t mean as much'. He stated that he loved having Lett around and referred to him as an inspiration.

During a 1998 interview with Chicago Tribune before his death, Lett revealed that he and Jordan talked at least twice a week. He revealed that Jordan kept telling him everything would work out, which he knew would be. While giving the interview, Lett's tumours were gone and he was going through chemotherapy. Lett passed away in 2000. Apart from Lett, Wozniak made an appearance on The Last Dance, where he played a game of coin toss with the Chicago Bulls legend. 

Michael Jordan security team member John Wozniak's The Last Dance appearance

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