Well, it may be the last dance for Scottie Pippen’s and Michael Jordan’s friendship. If there ever was one. The one-two punch of two historic Chicago Bulls three-peats in the 1990s may be coming to a screeching halt as the former Small Forward has now come forward in a new memoir stating that he is not happy how he and his former teammate were portrayed in the award-winning ESPN docu-series, The Last Dance.
GQ Magazine got a hold of a copy of Unguarded and printed an excerpt. In the piece, Pippen accused the 10-episode series of putting Jordan on a pedestal at the expense of other team members.
“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,” Pippen wrote. “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.”
The Last Dance chronicled the 1997-98 season for the Bulls, which ended with the team’s sixth NBA championship. Each episode featured flashbacks chronicling Jordan’s time with the Bulls, but also spent some time focusing on Pippen and notorious badboy, Dennis Rodman.
Jordan, who held rights to all the footage from that final season, held full editorial control.
“Each episode was the same: Michael on a pedestal, his teammates secondary, smaller, the message no different from when he referred to us back then as his ‘supporting cast,’” Pippen continued. “From one season to the next, we received little or no credit whenever we won but the bulk of the criticism when we lost. 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.”
You can’t publish an article like this without some reactions from Twitter:
Read the full excerpt here. Unguarded hits bookstores and Amazon on November 9.