With the score tied, the eight-time NBA champion drilled what proved to be the game-winning jump shot with 5.0 seconds remaining.
"The ultimate trust from Michael (Jordan) comes in the playoffs if you come through," Kerr explained during episode No. 9 of "The Last Dance" documentary. "I think he respected me because he knew I fought and I was competitive and I worked and I got the most out of myself. But I hadn't performed very well in the Finals.
"I was struggling and I was so hard on myself. As a role player, I'd get five shots a game. So every shot took on way too much importance."
Well. Kerr certainly stepped up to the challenge and redeemed himself.
In the process, he helped deliver the Bulls their fifth championship in seven years.
"Phil (Jackson) calls timeout and Michael knew what was coming," Kerr said. "Earlier in the series -- in a very similar situation late in a game -- John Stockton had come over and doubled him and stolen the ball, which helped seal the win for Utah.
"He mumbled something like, 'Hey Steve, Hey Steve -- be ready.' He knew the camera was always on him, and I'm like oblivious, yelling back, 'I'll be ready! I'll be ready (laughter)!'"
And ready he was.
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"Tonight, Steve Kerr earned his wings," Jordan told reporters after the win. "And I'm very happy for Steve."
The documentary also showed Kerr's hilarious speech from the championship parade that followed.
"A lot of people have been asking me about the shot the other night, and there have been some misconceptions about what actually happened. I wanted to clear it up," he said at the podium. "When we called timeout with 25 seconds to go, we went into the huddle and Phil told Michael, 'I want you to take the last shot.' And Michael said, 'You know what Phil -- I don't feel real comfortable in these situations. So maybe we ought to go in another direction -- why don't we go to Steve?'
"So I thought to myself, 'Well, I guess I gotta bail Michael out again ... anyway, the shot went in and that's my story. And I'm sticking to it."
😂 Steve Kerr talks about "bailing Michael Jordan out AGAIN" and hitting the game-winning shot in the 1997 NBA Finals. pic.twitter.com/vm7ffqLA1P
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) June 13, 2019
Kerr is a living legend.
Steve Kerr's Michael Jordan NBA title parade roast shows trust earned originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area