In the summer of 1993, Michael Jordan suffered a massive tragedy. His father, James Jordan, was murdered while he slept in his car on the side of a North Carolina highway. Jordan’s father’s body was discovered in a South Carolina creek three weeks after two teenagers shot him.
Scottie Pippen never offerred condolences to Michael Jordan
In Pippen’s new memoir, Unguarded, the Bulls icon talks in-depth about his relationship — or lack thereof — with Jordan. According to Carolina Howe of the New York Post, Pippen regrets not offering condolences to His Airness after James Jordan was murdered.
“Michael and I aren’t close and never have been,” Pippen wrote in his book.
In a June interview with GQ, Pippen said, “Michael was bigger than the game, you know. Even my initial arrival to Chicago, he was a big, iconic figure for the NBA. So, we never really had that off-the-court relationship.”
Pippen probably should have offered his condolences to Jordan after James Jordan died despite not being close with the Bulls superstar. It’s a common courtesy one would expect from anyone, especially a teammate.
It seems like Pippen didn’t enjoy being in the shadow of Jordan during the ’90s based on some of the quotes from his memoir. The seven-time All-Star is ready to tell his side of the story after ESPN’s The Last Dance docuseries put Jordan on a “pedestal” and didn’t focus enough on his teammates.
Scottie Pippen: Michael Jordan got $10 million for The Last Dance
Pippen destroyed Jordan several times in his memoir. He’s upset that the UNC product disrespected so many teammates and received $10 million for his role in The Last Dance.
“I’m not suggesting Michael wouldn’t have been a superstar wherever he ended up,” Pippen writes. “He was that spectacular. Just that he relied on the success we attained as a team—six titles in eight years—to propel him to a level of fame throughout the world no other athlete, except for Muhammad Ali, has reached in modern times. To make things worse, Michael received $10 million for his role in the doc while my teammates and I didn’t earn a dime, another reminder of the pecking order from the old days.”
The Bulls went 6-0 in the Finals during the ’90s, with Jordan winning all six Finals MVPs. However, Jordan never won a playoff series without Pippen. It appears Pip wanted to see more credit thrown his way in The Last Dance since he played a significant role in the dynasty.
When Pippen realized The Last Dance was essentially going to be Jordan propaganda, he wasn’t too surprised since he knew what made his former teammate tick.
Pip: How naïve I was to expect anything else
Pippen admits in his memoir that he wasn’t shocked by how The Last Dance played out since he knew what type of person Jordan was. The Arkansas native was disgusted with how the docuseries made everyone around Jordan seem secondary.
“Michael could shoot 6 for 24 from the field, commit 5 turnovers, and he was still, in the minds of the adoring press and public, the Errorless Jordan,” Pippen writes. “Now here I was, in my midfifties, seventeen years since my final game, watching us being demeaned once again. Living through it the first time was insulting enough.”
Pippen doesn’t hold back in his criticism of Jordan. Bulls fans likely thought the two icons would be brothers for life after winning six titles together. However, it sounds like they were never close to begin with.