One thing is clear from Scottie Pippen’s new autobiography “Unguarded” – he’s no fan of Michael Jordan.
In an excerpt published online by GQ, Pippen criticized how the 10-part ESPN documentary “The Last Dance” gave outsized credit to Jordan for the Bulls’ championship era while giving short shrift to the rest of the team.
“The final two episodes aired on May 17. Similar to the previous eight, they glorified Michael Jordan while not giving nearly enough praise to me and my proud teammates. Michael deserved a large portion of the blame. The producers had granted him editorial control of the final product. The doc couldn’t have been released otherwise. He was the leading man and the director,” Pippen wrote.
“My years in Chicago, beginning as a rookie in the fall of 1987, were the most rewarding of my career: twelve men coming together as one, fulfilling the dreams we had as kids in playgrounds across the land when all we needed was a ball, a basket, and our imagination. To be a member of the Bulls during the 1990s was to be part of something magical. For our times and for all time.
“Except Michael was determined to prove to the current generation of fans that he was larger-than-life during his day — and still larger than LeBron James, the player many consider his equal, if not superior.”
Pippen goes on to illustrate how he perceived the documentary as more about Jordan than the Bulls as a team.
“Even in the second episode, which focused for a while on my difficult upbringing and unlikely path to the NBA, the narrative returned to MJ and his determination to win. I was nothing more than a prop. His ‘best teammate of all time,’ he called me. He couldn’t have been more condescending if he tried.”
Pippen writes that he’s spoken to other former Bulls and they also felt disrespected by “The Last Dance.”
“Unguarded” will be released Nov. 9.