Scottie Pippen has been in the headlines lately, but for all the wrong reasons. Recently, Scottie has decided to come out of the shadow and destroy the narrative of being the quiet side-kick to Michael Jordan. On a couple of occasions, Pippen has stated some pretty controversial statements, revolving primarily about his time with the Chicago Bulls, while sparing nobody, especially Michael Jordan and Phil Jackson.
Most notably, the other day on The Dan Patrick Show, Pippen said some pretty controversial stuff about his former coach Phil Jackson, accusing him of being racist because he opted to give Toni Kukoč the final shot in a Playoff game versus the Knicks back in 1994. Those comments stirred up a blurry of reactions, as Pippen has been on the other end of criticism due to his uncalled and harsh accusations towards former peers.
The Phil comments got the most attention, as not many people bought into Pippen's narrative of one of the greatest coaches ever being racist. Fans went even so far as to dig up this footage of Phil praising Pippen, calling him the greatest all-around player in the NBA.
"Scottie is such an unselfish player; he's the greatest all-around player in the NBA right now. He's absolutely terrific...Michael's a terrific player. I'm not taking anything away from Michael, but Scottie's as a rebounder, as a passer, as a defender, and the whole complete package. And the great energy that he can have on the court does a lot of things out there in the basketball court. And he can lead a team very well. He can get 10,12 points and 10 assists, and 10 rebounds and really be the determining factor. Now no one can score like Michael, and scoring is a wonderful thing to do, but it's not the end all-end all. It takes a lot of guys, and the combination of Pippen-Jordan is the amazing combination of the Bulls."
Phil Jackson, ">Oldskoolbbal
What we see is Phil acknowledging everything true NBA fans knew, and that is that Pippen was instrumental in Bulls winning all of their six championships. The versatility and willingness to do the dirty work alongside the greatest player of all time created the best duo ever and a dynasty in Chicago. But now, Pippen's reputation has started to downgrade due to him bashing the same guys he went to battle with and had good relationships until recently.
What is the reason behind Pippen's recent outburst? Some people think pride and ego have started to kick in, as Jordan was in the spotlight while the Bulls were dominating and well after. MJ is still glorified as the consensus GOAT. At the same time, Pippen has been overlooked. The actual reason could be the fact Pippen is trying to boost up his latest business ventures or, to be more specific, the book coming out later this year, called "UNGUARDED," and his own brand of bourbon called "Digits." But has Pippen really sunk so low he is willing to destroy friendships and his reputation in order to make some more money? Only Scottie knows.
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