Michael Jordan in NBA Jam.

Michael Jordan was famously only in a super-limited edition of the original NBA Jam, one created for Gary Payton, Ken Griffey Jr. and Jordan himself. When asked about that edition in a Reddit AMA Friday, NBA Jam creator Mark Turmell (who now works on Wizard of Oz: Magic Match for Zynga) relayed the backstory of that edition (Jordan backed out of the original game by pulling out of the NBPA group license weeks before it shipped, but Payton and Griffey later asked for a custom version of the game which included them and Jordan). He also said he might still have it, and might be able to post it online. Here’s what Turmell said:

Mark Turmell on NBA Jam with Michael Jordan.

The EPROMs in question are programmable read-only memory chips, and if Turmell still has them, the data on them could well be used to put the official version of Jordan in versions of the original NBA Jam. (People have done this unofficially with various mods before.) Polygon’s Owen Good followed up with Turmell, who said he’ll have to check through his cabinet, but he doesn’t foresee issues sharing the EPROMs if they do exist given how much time has passed since the original Jam’s release in 1993:

Polygon checked with Turmell on what he meant by this remark. “I was referring to EPROMs.” he said. “I have a cabinet stored away with sets of them.

“Have to see how they’re labeled when I get in there,” he went on. “Can’t imagine getting into any trouble at this point!” meaning he foresees no rights issues with sharing whatever he has.

We’ll see if anything comes of this, but if it does, many more people than those original three athletes may get to experience this rare version of NBA Jam. It’s heating up…


About Andrew Bucholtz

Andrew Bucholtz has been covering sports media for Awful Announcing since 2012. He is also a staff writer for The Comeback. His previous work includes time at Yahoo! Sports Canada and Black Press.