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Wayne Gretzky once called out Michael Jordan for undertipping

Sep 8, 2010, 4:30 PM EDT

Via Deadspin, here’s an anecdote about Wayne Gretzky and Michael Jordan from Rich Strafella, Vegas lifer and current Vice President of operations for the Hard Rock Hotel:

UD: What’s your best celebrity story?
RS: I remember a night when Wayne Gretzky insulted Michael Jordan at the table. It was a private salon game. Michael had ordered a drink from the cocktail waitress, and he gave her a five-dollar chip. Wayne took it off the cocktail waitress’s tray, gave it back to Michael, grabbed a hundred-dollar chip from Michael’s stack and put it on the cocktail waitress’s tray. Then he said, “That’s how we tip in Las Vegas, Michael.”

Yikes. It’s not clear exactly when this event occurred, but I’m assuming it was shortly before hockey had that lockout, lost most of its major TV rights, and became the most irrelevant of the four major American team sports. Do not mess with Michael Jordan. He will destroy your very league. 

  1. Daryl Seegin - Sep 8, 2010 at 5:18 PM

    MJ tips very well. He gave a taxi cab driver I know a $100 tip for a 5 minute cab ride once.

  2. butstill - Sep 8, 2010 at 5:30 PM

    Perhaps the waitress had an attitude.
    I tip well… when deserved. And I’m far from rich, or even well-off.
    But either way, that last little bit about destroying your league if you mess with MJ was pretty funny.

  3. Bob Blick - Sep 8, 2010 at 6:24 PM

    What in the heck is wrong with a $5 tip for a drink?! I don’t care how much these guys make. It doesn’t mean they have to get carried away and pass out $100 tips.

  4. hnirobert - Sep 8, 2010 at 8:06 PM

    This is the reason why most athletes are broke within a few years of retirement. Just because you have the money doesn’t mean you have the blow it. $100 for ONE drink? C’mon!

  5. oscar - Sep 9, 2010 at 1:00 AM

    thats why mj is smart and now is owner of a team. most athletes are broke becuase they spend too much.

  6. kevin - Sep 9, 2010 at 4:45 PM

    This is plain stupid. When you have as much money as Gretzky or Jordan then you can tip as big as you want.
    Gretzky was probably just teasing Jordon. They are good friends and both huge sports icons.
    I think you are making something out of nothing.
    And another stupid comment about this guy about Jordan buying the league. How stupid is that. Gretzky himself has as much money as Jordan and is worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
    Don’t mess with Gretzky either.

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