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Scottie Maurice Pippen born September 25, 1965) is an American retired professional Basketball player who played in the National Basketball Association (NBA), most remembered for his time with the Chicago in which he helped lead the team to six NBA championships.

Pippen is widely regarded as being one of the best defenders of his era, in which he was named NBA All-Defensive Team eight times and All-NBA First Team three times. Along with his defensive play, he was also a seven-time NBA All Star and was the NBA All Star game MVP in 1994. He was named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History during the 1996–97 NBA season. He is one of four players to have their jerseys retired by the Chicago, the others being Jerry Sloan, Bob Love, and Michael Jordan. During his seventeen year career, he played twelve seasons with the Chicago, one with the Rockets and four with the Trail Blazers, making the post-season sixteen straight times. He has played in more post-season games than any other players except Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Robert Horry.

Pippen will be eligible for induction into the Basketball in 2010.

Early lifeEdit

Scottie Pippen was born in Hamburg, Arkansas attending college at the University of Central Arkansas. At the start of his college career, the then 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m) Pippen was a essential key on the team with such high and depended on his stipend for being the team manager and his summer job as a McDonalds Worker to fund his education. In those four years, however, Pippen grew to a height of 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m). He eventually reached 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m)) and improved enough by his senior year to be considered a viable NBA prospect.

NBA careerEdit

Early careerEdit

Pippen's performance in the pre-draft Portsmouth Invitational Tournament improved his draft stock dramatically. He was selected fifth overall in the 1987 NBA Draft by the Seattle SuperSonics and traded eventually to the Chicago for Olden Polynice. The trade is regarded as a steal by the Bulls as Pippen would go on to be named one of the 50 Greatest Players in NBA History NBA players of all time.

Pippen became part of Chicago's young forward tandem with 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) power forward Horace Grant, though both came off the bench to back up Brad Sellers and Charles Oakley, respectively, during their rookie seasons. Pippen claimed the starting small forward position during the 1988 playoffs with his stellar play, helping the Michael Jordan-led Bulls reach the Eastern Conference semifinals for the first time in over a two decades.

The Bulls' first three-peatEdit

Pippen continued to improve, helping the Bulls to the Conference Finals the following year as well as in 1992, when he earned his first NBA All-Star Game berth. However, in the Conference Finals versus the Detroit Pistons, Pippen suffered from severe migraines during the deciding seventh game. That would have greatly affected his performance, so he decided to sit. In 1993, he continued to establish himself as a force to be reckoned with. Pippen emerged as the Bulls' primary defensive stopper and an offensive threat to most teams. He helped lead the Bulls to six NBA championships (1990–91, 1991–92, 1992–93, 1995–96, 1996–97, and 1997–98). Pippen was selected as one of the NBA's Fifty Greatest Players when the league was celebrating its fiftieth season in 1998.

Pippen became known for stellar defense in addition to his consistent scoring, earning 18 NBA All-Defensive Team nods, including 8 on the first team. In 1992, he was named to the original Dream Team (basketball) which competed in the Olympics in Barcelona, Spain.

Pippen without JordanEdit

Michael Jordan retired before the 1994 season, and in his absence Pippen, when he finally emerged from Jordan's shadow and performed as one of the best players in the league. That year, he earned All-Star Game MVP honors and had perhaps his best season, leading the Bulls in scoring, assists, and the entire league in steals, averaging 22.0 points, 8.7 rebounds, 5.6 assists, 2.9 steals, 1.9 three-pointers, and 0.8 blocks per game, while shooting 49.1% from the field and a career-best 32% from the three-point line. For his efforts, he earned the first of five straight All-NBA First Team nods, and finished second in the MVP voting. The Bulls finished the season with 55 wins. Only two less than the year before. However, perhaps the most infamous episode of Pippen's career came in the post-season of Pippen's first year without Jordan. In the 1994 NBA Playoffs, the Eastern Conference semifinals pitted the Bulls against their fellow comrads, the New York Knicks, whom the Bulls had dispatched en route to a championship in each of the previous three seasons. On May 13, 1994, down 2-0 in the series and tied 100-100 in Game Three, Bulls coach Phil Jackson needed a big play from his team to have any hope of advancing to the next round of the playoffs. With 1.8 seconds left and the score tied, Jackson designed the last play for rookie Toni Kukoč, with Pippen relegated to simply inbounding the basketball. Pippen, who had been the Bulls' leader all season long in Jordan's absence, was so angered by Jackson's decision to not let him take the potential game-winner that he refused to leave the bench and re-enter the game when the timeout was over.

Although Kukoč did eventually hit the game-winner, a 23-foot fadeaway jumper, there was little celebrating to be done by the Bulls, as television cameras caught an unsmiling Phil Jackson storming out of the arena. "Scottie asked out of the play," Jackson would tell reporters moments later in the post-game interview room. Those seeking further answers found Pippen in the locker room after the game, looking shell-shocked and disoriented; when asked to confirm Jackson's statement, Pippen could only respond with "Yeah, pretty much ... We exchanged words, and I just took a seat."

Teammate Steve Kerr elaborated when recently asked to recall the event: "I don't know what got into Pippen. He is such a great teammate and maybe the pressure was getting to him and he just could not take it anymore, no one knows for sure but he is a team player." Pippen later apologized to his teammates after the incident.

The Bulls went on to lose the 1994 NBA Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Knicks in seven games. A second controversy occurred in the series at the end of game 5 when Pippen was called for a debatable foul on the Knicks' Hubert Davis in the waning seconds of the game, which allowed the Knicks to win. This helped lead the Knicks to a seven game series victory.

Trade rumors involving Pippen escalated during the 1994 offseason. Jerry Krause, the Bulls' General Manager (and a man who did not get along with Pippen at all), was reported to be looking to ship Pippen off to the Seattle SuperSonics in exchange for all-star forward Shawn Kemp, moving Toni Kukoč into Pippen's position as starting small forward with Kemp filling in the vacant starting power forward position in place of Horace Grant, a free agent who left the Bulls for the up-and-coming Orlando Magic during the off-season. However, the trade was never made and those rumors were put to rest once it was announced that Michael Jordan would be returning to the Bulls late in the 1994-95 season. Chicago certainly needed Jordan's presence as much as ever, because the Pippen-led Bulls did not fare nearly as well in 1994-95 as they had the season before -- in fact, for the first time in years they were in danger of missing the playoffs (though much of this may be attributed to a lack of interior defense and rebounding due to Grant's departure). The Bulls were just 34-31 prior to Jordan's return for the final 17 games, and MJ led them to a 13-4 record to close the regular season. Still, Pippen finished the 1994-95 season leading the Bulls in every major statistical category: assists, rebounds, points, steals, and blocks; Pippen is one of only five players in NBA history to accomplish this feat.

The Bulls' second three-peatEdit

With Jordan's return to the NBA, the Bulls once again became the league's dominant team. With a revamped roster that included Dennis Rodman and Luc Longley, the Bulls managed to post the best regular season record in NBA history (72-10) in 1996 en route to winning their fourth title against the Seattle SuperSonics. In the following season, Chicago finished a league-best 69-13 and again won the title, this time defeating the Utah Jazz. Amid speculation that the 1997-98 season would be the last in Chicago for Pippen, Jordan, and Jackson, the Bulls followed up by topping the Jazz again in the Finals in to cap their second three-peat.

Later careerEdit

After playing in Chicago for 11 seasons, his tumultuous relationship with General Manager Jerry Krause came to a head, and as Michael Jordan and Phil Jackson also departed Chicago, the second all-time leader in points, assists, and steals in Bulls franchise history was traded to the Houston Rockets for the lockout-shortened season in 1998–99. Pippen's trade to Houston received a lot of publicity including his only solo cover of Sports Illustrated. While there he teamed with Hakeem Olajuwon and Charles Barkley to form one of the best front lines in NBA history, but his failure to assume the "franchise" mantle from Olajuwon led to chemistry problems (with Barkley in particular) and eventually his departure.

On April 22, 1999, Pippen was detained under suspicion of Driving while intoxicated, but the charges were later dropped due to insufficient evidence.

Following the disappointing lockout-shortened season in Houston, Pippen was traded in the offseason to the Portland Trail Blazers, whom he helped to the Western Conference finals. But once there, they lost to the eventual champion Los Angeles Lakers in seven games, despite holding a commanding 15-point lead in the fourth quarter of the final game. Pippen played on for several more seasons in Portland, but they never again advanced that far in the playoffs. After the 2002-03 season he signed once more with the Chicago, but due to injury problems he was only able to suit up for 23 games in 2003-04 and retired shortly after the season.

For the most part, Pippen was a near-constant presence in the NBA postseason over the course of his career, reaching the playoffs 16 straight years (11 with Chicago, 1 with Houston, 4 with Portland), and has played in more playoff games than any NBA player except Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Robert Horry.

Pippen is considered among the best supporting players in NBA history and is also notable for having been a prototypical "point forward", a term which he popularized (and revitalized) with his ball-handling, passing and court vision—skills traditionally limited to point guards. This was in addition to his rebounding, scoring, and defense, all contributing to his consistent play for over a decade.

RetirementEdit

Pippen and wife

After retiring, he spent some time working as a basketball analyst for the Chicago Bulls. Currently, he is a special assistant coach for the Los Angeles Lakers. On December 25, 2005, Pippen debuted as studio analyst for the NBA on ABC. Before this he was a part-time analyst for ESPN.

The Chicago Bulls retired Pippen's jersey number on December 9, 2005 in a ceremony. The team played against the Los Angeles Lakers that night, and Pippen was reunited with Phil Jackson, Michael Jordan, Dennis Rodman, and Horace Grant during the ceremony. Pippen's jersey number, 33, joins Michael Jordan's 23, Jerry Sloan's 4, and Bob Love's 10 as the only four numbers retired by the Bulls.

Achievements and recordsEdit

Holds NBA Records for:

  • Assists by a forward, career (6,135)
  • Steals by a forward, career (2,307)
  • Steals, Playoffs, career (395)
  • Three point field goals made, NBA Finals, game (7, shared with Kenny Smith and Ray Allen)
  • One of three players in NBA history to record 200 steals and 100 blocks, season (1989-90 season)
  • Michael Jordan performed the feat back-to-back in 1986-87 and 1987-88 seasons
  • Hakeem Olajuwon in 1988-89 season
  • Half of only the 10th tandem in NBA history to score 40 points in the same game
  • Pippen scored 40 points and Michael Jordan scored 44 points against the Indiana Pacers on February 18, 1996
  • Half of only the 9th tandem in NBA history to record triple doubles in the same game
  • with Michael Jordan

Achievements:

  • Pippen recorded 17 career triple-doubles in the regular season.
  • Led NBA in Steals (232) and Steals Per Game (2.94) in 1994-95 season.
  • Chicago Bulls Career Leader in Three-Point Field Goals Made (664), Three-Point Field Goals Attempted (2,031) and Personal Fouls (2,534).
  • His 10 NBA All-Defensive honors and 8 NBA All-Defensive First Team honors are each one shy of the NBA record.

Personal lifeEdit

Pippen has four children:three boys, Scottie Jr., Preston, and Antron. He is married to Assyrian-American Larsa Younan and resides in Fort Lauderdale.

Torpan PojatEdit

Scottie Pippen made a deal with Torpan Pojat (shortly ToPo) and played 2 games in Finland against Tarmo and Honka, including Petteri Koponen against him when he played against Honka.

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit

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