Look, I get it.
Scottie Pippen is a man of principle, and at the end of the day, he just wants people to put some respect on his name.
His on-again, off-again ex-wife, Larsa, has already made his cushy gig as an NBA analyst unnecessarily complicated, and the last thing he needs is his former teammate—who just so happens to be the greatest basketball player of all-time—doing the same.
Like the rest of us trapped in our homes during this global pandemic, Pippen caught ESPN’s brilliant 10-part documentary series The Last Dance, which revisited Michael Jordan’s final season with the Chicago Bulls. Some hailed it as a “pulsating celebration of greatness,” others dismissed it as an extraordinary work of fiction. Jordan’s own teammates have even been divided on the matter, and apparently, the Lil’ Cease to Jordan’s Notorious B.I.G. wasn’t particularly fond of it either.
Despite his invaluable contributions to six NBA championships as a member of the Bulls, Pippen caught a few shots throughout The Last Dance. His decision to delay foot surgery until the beginning of the 1997-98 season was something that Jordan deemed as “selfish,” and in an interview with The Guardian, Pippen finally shared his feelings about how he was portrayed in the film.
“I don’t think it was that accurate in terms of really defining what was accomplished in one of the greatest eras of basketball, but also by two of the greatest players—and one could even put that aside and say the greatest team of all time,” he told The Guardian. “I didn’t think those things stood out in the documentary. I thought it was more about Michael trying to uplift himself and to be glorified [the series was co-produced by Jordan’s Jump 23 company]. I think it also backfired to some degree in that people got a chance to see what kind of personality Michael had.”
So did he keep that same energy and tell His Airness how he really felt about the film?
“I told him I wasn’t too pleased with it,” Pippen said. “He accepted it. He said, ‘Hey, you’re right’. That was pretty much it.”
Well, alrighty then.
If it makes Pippen feel any better, instead of Jordan cashing in on disparaging his good name, His Airness reportedly donated $2 million worth of proceeds from the series to help fight world hunger during the holidays, according to Feed America.
At the end of the day, the two made magic together on court. And while The Last Dance might’ve been a valiant attempt to rewrite history, it will never compromise Pippen’s standing as a Chicago Bulls legend and all-time great.