Metta Sandiford-Artest says when Scottie Pippen was with Michael Jordan, it was all about Michael and he didn’t realize how good Pippen was.
Scottie Pippen was the perfect ‘Robin’ to Michael Jordan’s ‘Batman’: an athletic offensive threat who was one of the greatest perimeter defenders in the history of the game. Unfortunately for the 1987 draftee, you can’t mention Robin without talking about Batman but the true isn’t same the other way around.
Though the two were an incredible duo that led the Chicago Bulls to six championships in 8 years, Jordan was always mentioned ahead of anybody else on the team. Rightfully so as he did things on both ends of the floor (mainly offensively) that had never been done before. To further spread the gospel of ‘Michael Jordan’, he would darn near go out there and do it every single night.
Pippen has always been in Michael’s shadow due to the latter’s greatness and so it was difficult to see what he would be like all on his own. For Metta Sandiford-Artest, when he did eventually see Pippen venture out without ‘His Airness’, he was not disappointed.
Metta didn’t realize just how good Scottie Pippen was until he left Michael Jordan.
The aftermath of the 1998 championship victory saw Michael Jordan retire, and most of the title core be traded elsewhere. Scottie Pippen found himself on the Houston Rockets for the latter half of the 1999 season but due to a feud with Charles Barkley, was traded to the Blazers the very next season.
Off court beefs didn’t curb Pippen from putting up great individual stats as, though he was a bit past his prime during the early 2000s, he still had a ton of juice left in him. Metta Sandiford-Artest took notice of this and said, “I didn’t realize how good Scottie was, honestly.”
“I don’t know if it’s just me but when Scottie was with Michael Jordan, it was all about Michael. We know Scottie could come and hit shots off the glass, could get a stop. You throw it up and he’s gonna dunk it. As a kid, you don’t understand that that’s greatness.”
Though Pip’s years alone weren’t his best, statistically, Artest’s point is proven by the fact that in the 1994 season, without Jordan, he had the best year of his career and was 3rd in MVP voting as well.