Bill Cartwright, Stacey King, Toni Kukoc, John Paxson, Steve Kerr, Dennis Rodman, BJ Armstrong, Luc Longley, Bill Wennington, Will Purdue, Scott Williams, Horace Grant, Jud Buechler, and Scottie Pippen.
Those are just a few of the players who owe their places on the NBA map to Michael Jordan.
Apparently one of them has a Sears Tower-sized case of amnesia.
Scottie Pippen made news this week, and no, it wasn’t for weeping in a towel and refusing to go into a big meeting, by claiming that Lebron James could eventually be better than Jordan.
Pippen played for the Bulls during the first three peat, and was given the reigns to the Bulls after Jordan’s first retirement. During that time he established himself as one of the league’s top players but he didn’t win bupkiss.
Then Jordan came back and led the team to a second three peat. After he retired again, Pippen failed to win another title.
So if nothing else, you could call Pippen a tad ungrateful for his recent comments.
I will agree with you on that, but will take it a step further.
Not only is Pippen ungrateful, he is a second banana, a great number two who never had what it takes to do what Jordan did, and a world class ass clown.
Lebron couldn’t win on his own, so it’s understandable why Pippen feels a certain kinship to him, but unless that kinship is laced with Peyote, I don’t see how Pippen could justify his comments. The fact of the matter is that Jordan won 6 titles, changed the NBA, and made a subpar supporting cast into a winning machine. He also did all of that against top shelf competition who knew what was coming, and still couldn’t stop Jordan from scoring.
His game was the basketball equivalent of Mariano Rivera’s cut fastball. You could be told exactly what was coming, and still end up looking stupid.
Lebron is a mutant. He does things on a basketball court that no one else in the world can do. But he plays in a different league than Jordan did. In the NBA today you can’t breathe on a superstar of James’ caliber without hearing a whistle. It puts defenses in an almost impossible position. You can’t be physical with Lebron, yet he can barrel into you with his lightning quick 260lb frame and draw a foul.
When Jordan was destroying the NBA, it hadn’t gotten all nervous nelly about protecting its superstars yet. Though he can be credited with creating the rule, he didn’t get to enjoy the benefits as much as men like Lebron, Wade, and Kobe do now. Look at how the Pistons used to play Jordan. They were hand checking with both hands, pushing, pulling, and knocking him to the floor every time he went to the basket.
He scored anyway.
He won anyway.
If Jordan was in his prime, and you put him in the league today, he would average 75 points a game. It took Lebron joining forces with another top 3 superstar and an alien, in order to create the unstoppable force that was Michael Jeffrey Jordan.
Pippen substantiated his position by telling the world that he played the game, and the rest of us should go back to watching.
We did watch. We watched one man single handedly transform a team of has-beens and no names into champions.
Then we watched as Lebron quit on his team so he could join forces with Dwayne Wade.
And we will watch as Lebron attempts to take a step onto the front porch in order to get near the front door. If he gets up those steps, he can walk through the kitchen, out the back door, and into the backyard.
There in a hammock reserved for the best ever, he will find that Jordan is laying comfortably, unbothered with a big fat cigar in his mouth.
On that day Lebron, can pull up the folding chair that many have tried to sit in. It lays on the ground right next to the hammock and says “Number 2”.
Until that day, someone please get Scottie Pippen to a tattoo artist so he can get his address, phone number, and kid’s names tattooed on him, like Guy Pierce did in Memento.
That way if the amnesia persists, he will still be able to find his way to Jordan’s house to cut the grass every Sunday.