The 10-episode Docu-series The Last Dance covers the 1997-98 Chicago Bulls Season and the dynasty’s sixth and final championship. The Last Dance aired on ESPN from April 19 – May 17 and received critical acclaim from sports fans, television and film critics, and NBA players.
During and after The Last Dance was airing, many took to social media to express which teams (of any sport) and/or athletes they wanted to see get The Last Dance treatment. It was recently announced on May 21 that Man in the Arena, a nine-episode docu-series on NFL Quarterback Tom Brady will be released in 2021 on ESPN. As reported by Forbes, Man in the Arena will cover, “The New England Patriots legend across his nine Super Bowl appearances (one Super Bowl per episode) with his most iconic moments featured and a number of lesser-known elements to Brady’s career that ended up being game-changing for the athlete.”
Please be aware that all of the Sports Teams that I included in this article will be from a variety of sports. Furthermore, while the majority of the sports teams that people wanted a Last Dance Documentary on were championship-winning ones, I also included a few teams (including one that had a losing record) that didn’t win the title that also worthy of getting their own ‘Last Dance‘ Documentary.
Now, with all of that being said, take a look down below and check the following 12 Sports Teams That Should Get The Last Dance Treatment:
1. The 2003-04 Los Angeles Lakers:
One of the most popular sports teams that fans want a Last Dance Docuseries on is the 2003-04 Los Angeles Lakers. Like how the 1997-98 NBA Season was the Michael Jordan era Bulls’ Last Dance, the 2003-04 NBA Season was the Last Dance for the Lakers of the Shaq-Kobe era. However, unlike the 1997-87 Bulls, the 2003-04 Lakers lost the NBA Finals in an upset to The Detroit Pistons.
For the Lakers, the 2003-04 NBA Season was wild and full of drama (on and off of the court). Notable events include the Kobe-Shaq feud reaching its boiling point, the additions of ring-chasers Gary Payton and Karl Malone, Kobe being on trial for his sexual assault charge, and Derek Fisher’s crazy game-winning buzzer-beater with 0.4 seconds left against the Spurs in the playoffs, to name a couple of moments.
2. The 2000-2003 Portland Trailblazers Teams:
Another one of the sports teams that didn’t win the Championship but is worthy of receiving The Last Dance Treatment are the 2000-03 Portland Trailblazers, more famously known as The Jail Blazers. The reason for this nickname was due to the antics, drama, and off-the court behavior of the players on the Trailblazers those years.
An in-depth look at players from The Jail Blazers era such as Rasheed Wallace (the NBA’s record holder for technical fouls in a season with 41), Zach Randolph, Bonzi Wells, Qyntel Woods, and Darius Miles will definitely be worth watching and have viewers watching a Last Dance style like Documentary with popcorn!
3. The 2016 New England Patriots:
As I said in the introduction earlier, Tom Brady is getting his own Last Dance Docu-series that will air on ESPN next year. Each of the nine episodes will focus on each of The New England Patriots’s Super Bowl appearances during the Brady-Belichick era. While I like this idea, however, I would like to see a Last Dance style Docu-series on just The 2016 New England Patriot season, which ended with the team winning Super Bowl LI in a historic comeback over The Atlanta Falcons.
Along with the historic comeback over The Atlanta Falcons at Super Bowl LI, some events happened during the 2016 New England Patriots Season that make it Last Dance Worthy. These events included the drama surrounding Deflategate, Tom Brady (center in the photo below) serving his four-game suspension for his alleged role in the scandal, and how Patriots backup quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (on the left in the photo below) and third-string Quarterback Jacoby Brissett (on the right in the photo below) led the team to a 3-1 record in Brady’s absence. Patriots would love to get more insight as to how The Wolfpack came to be!
4. The 2013-2018 Real Madrid Teams:
In a span of five years, Real Madrid won the UEFA Champions League title four times (2013-14, 2015-16, 2016-17, and 2017-18). Besides Cristiano Ronaldo, insight and commentary from players such as Sergio Ramos, Luka Modric, Karim Benzema, Gareth Bale, Angel Di Maria, Iker Casillas, Keylor Navas, etc. will be awesome. Along with covering each of their four Champions League titles, other events that the docu-series should cover include the drama surrounding Rafa Benetiz’s short stint as coach before Zinedine Zidane took over, Iker Casillas’s heartbreaking departure in 2015, more insight as to what happened between Sergio Ramos and Liverpool player Mo Salah during the 2018 final, and why Cristiano Ronaldo left Real Madrid for Juventus after the team won the 2018 final, etc.
5. The 2011-12 Chelsea F.C. Team:
A docu-series on the 2011-12 Chelsea Team will mostly cover their journey to winning the 2011-12 Champions League Title, which they beat Bayern Munich (who hosted the final that year) in penalties.
6. The 2003-04 Arsenal F.C. Team:
One of the most historic sports teams that 100 percent deserves their own Last Dance Documentary is the 2003-04 Arsenal F.C. Team. Famously nicknamed The Invincibles, the 2003-04 Arsenal F.C. team went through the entire Premier League campaign without a single defeat, a feat that has yet to be accomplished by any other Premier League Team. To commemorate Arsenal’s historic achievement, the Premier League commissioned a unique gold trophy that was awarded to Arsenal before their first home game of the following season.
Arsenal’s historic 2003-04 Premier League Season was also part of the team’s record-breaking 49-game winning streak. Along with covering the Invicibles’s record-breaking season in the Premier League and winning streak, fans would also love to see a more in-depth look at Arsenal’s heated rivalry with Manchester United. We definitely wanted all of the tea on The Battle of The Buffet, a match that ended in a 2-0 win for Manchester United and snapped Arsenal’s 49-game winning streak, on top of everything that happened after the infamous Pizzagate scandal that happened after the game.
7. The 2018-19 Tottenham F.C. Team:
The knockout stages of the 2018-19 UEFA Champions League featured so many upsets and Tottenham’s journey to the final (which they lost 2-0 to fellow Premier League side Liverpool) was a surprise to many.
While everyone expected Tottenham to beat their Round of 16 opponents Borussia Dortmund, they made it all the way to the final after dramatic endings to the second-legs against Manchester City and Ajax in the quarterfinals and semi-finals respectively. The events and drama of those matches against Manchester City and Ajax alone make Tottenham one of the sports teams worthy of getting The Last Dance Treatment.
8. The 2017-19 Houston Astros Teams:
Without any question, a docu-series on The Houston Astros should focus on their sign-stealing scandal and the subsequent fallout. The Houston Astros won the 2017 World Series, a championship that will be forever tainted as an MLB Investigation (and videos on social media) proved that the team stole signs electronically during the 2017 MLB Season and for parts of the 2018 MLB Season.
9. The 2014-15 University of Kentucky Men’s Basketball Team:
Another one of the sports teams that didn’t win a championship but also deserve The Last Dance Treatment is the 2014-15 Kentucky Men’s Basketball Team. Members of that talented Kentucky Men’s Basketball Team include future NBA Players Devin Booker, Karl-Anthony Towns, Willie Cauley-Stein, Tyler Ulis, Trey Lyles, and The Harrison Twins.
The 2014-15 Kentucky Men’s Basketball Team were so dominant and many favored them to win The 2015 NCAA Tournament. However, the team lost their Final Four Matchup 71-64 to Wisconsin (the team they beat 74-73 on a last-second three-pointer in the same round the previous year). This loss crushed Kentucky’s hopes for a perfect 40-0 season. Had Kentucky advanced to the 2015 NCAA Championship Game and won, they would have been the first undefeated team to win March Madness since Indiana did so in 1976.
10. The 2015-16 Cleveland Cavaliers:
Another one of the most frequently mentioned sports teams that fans want to get The Last Dance treatment is the 2015-16 Cleveland Cavaliers. The team’s incredible 3-1 comeback against the 73-9 Warriors to win their first NBA championship cemented their right to deserve documentary treatment.
Besides their first and history-making NBA Championship, other stories from that Cleveland Cavaliers Team that can be told in this documentary include the mid-season firing of Head Coach David Blatt (despite the team having the best record in the Eastern Conference at the time of his firing), the relationship between Blatt and NBA Superstar Lebron James, Kyrie Irving’s rise to prominence, and a more behind-the-scenes look at the Cavaliers’ victory parade (Personally, I really want insight as to why went J.R. Smith famously went shirtless during and after the parade). In addition, insights from fascinating personalities in the organization (such as David Griffin, Ty Lue, Kevin Love, JR Smith, Tristan Thompson, and Richard Jefferson) will provide entertaining commentary and insights from The Cavaliers’ NBA Championship Winning Season.
11. The 2010-2012 Barcelona and Real Madrid Teams:
The two Spanish sides share a fierce rivalry that is one of the most famous between sports teams. Any match between Barcelona and Real Madrid is dubbed as “El Clásico”. While the rivalry is still strong and fierce today, the rivalry was intensified to the max between 2010-2012 when Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola were the managers of both teams respectively. During that period, multiple fights broke out whenever both sides played each other. The video below is from the bench-clearing brawl near the touchline that started after Marcelo tackled Cesc Fabregas with seconds left in the second leg of the 2011 Spanish Super Cup.
I’m sure that El Clásico fans would also love a more in-depth look into how the relationships between the Spanish players from both sides (who were part of the Spanish National Teams that won the 2008 and 2012 UEFA Tournament and the 2010 FIFA World Cup) were during that time and how El Clásico affected the Spanish National Team.
12. The 2015-16 Los Angeles Lakers Team:
Out of all the sports teams featured in this article, a lot of you are probably wondering why I included The 2015-16 Los Angeles Lakers, as they finished the 2015-16 NBA Season with a 17-65 record, the worst in the franchise’s history. The reason why I included the 2015-16 Lakers in my article is that it was the late Kobe Bryant’s final season as an NBA Player.
After Bryant announced his retirement via Dear Basketball, a poem he wrote for The Player’s Tribune, on November 25, 2015, he was honored around the league with a farewell tour. At every single one of his final games at the 29 other NBA Teams’ home arenas, the Laker legend was honored with video tributes, gifts, and fan ovations. Everyone sure remembers his final game where he scored 60 points in a 101–96 Lakers victory that eliminated the Utah Jazz from the playoffs.
A couple of months after Bryant’s tragic death in a helicopter accident, it was reported by ESPN that Bryant used a personal camera crew to film his season-long retirement tour in 2015-16. The camera crew had “unprecedented and, by far, greater access than anyone else ever,” according to Jordan Black, who worked in the Lakers’ PR Department.
While most of a Last Dance style Docu-series on the 2015-16 Lakers will feature a behind-the-scenes look at Kobe Bryant’s final season in the NBA, the docu-series should also cover and provide fans more insight into the drama behind the D’Angelo Russell and Nick Young Snapchat Incident that had everyone talking.
Besides the Sports Teams I listed above, which other sports teams would you like to see get The Last Dance Treatment? Be sure to let us know which professional sports teams you think deserve The Last Dance Treatment down below in the comments section!
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I am currently a senior at The University of Miami. I will graduate in December 2021 with a major in Journalism and minor in Sports Administration.