During the recreation of his own Dream Team, Michael Jordan decided to pick his Chicago Bulls teammate Scottie Pippen as the Small Forward over the likes of all-time legends like Julius Erving, Dominique Wilkins and Elgin Baylor.
Over the past several decades, the USA has been the most dominant basketball playing country. And if you’re a basketball fan, you know for a fact that the United States assembled arguably their greatest teams back in 1992 for the Barcelona Olympic Games and called it “The Dream Team“.
That team, co-led by Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, had some of the game’s biggest names – Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, Karl Malone, Scottie Pippen, Patrick Ewing, David Robinson and many more superstars.
As you must’ve rightly predicted, this USA Men’s Basketball team was a tough force to reckon with and won a gold medal at the event, staying undefeated in all their 8 games. The average margin of victory for the Dream Team was a whopping 43.8 points and head coach Chuck Daly used 0 timeouts during their campaign.
Back in 2005, right after his third and final retirement, MJ sat down for an interview with “Cigar Aficionado”. And His Airness was asked to recreate his own Dream Team. Alongside Magic Johnson, Larry Bird and Hakeem Olajuwon, MJ picked his Chicago Bulls teammate, Scottie Pippen, as his Small Forward on his Dream Team.
“Scottie Pippen is as versatile as it comes”: Michael Jordan
During his 2005 interview, Marvin R. Shanken asked Air Jordan:
“Michael, I’m now giving you the opportunity to create the Dream Team of Michael Jordan, of all players of basketball. You’re on the team, and you can name four other guys at different positions. That doesn’t mean there aren’t 20 other great guys for those positions, but you can explain your picks.”
After already selecting Magic, Larry and Olajuwon, Mike went on to pick his “Robin” from his Chicago Bulls days – Scottie Pippen.
“That is the toughest part because I played with one of the best small forwards, Scottie Pippen. He is as versatile as it comes. He handles the ball. He’s a good defensive rebounder.”
“I would be hard-pressed to pick someone else at the small forward position, even though I know Dr. J [Julius Erving] is sitting right there, too, especially in terms of excitement. And there’s Dominique Wilkins, too. And you’d have to think about Elgin Baylor, even though I never saw Baylor play, or played with him. But from what I know, and what he could provide, it’s Scottie Pippen. I know that’s being biased to some degree. But I can’t help it. “
Even though some people wouldn’t consider Scottie Pippen as the best Small Forward of all time, it is justifiable why Jordan would have him on his Dream Team. Has a career average of 17.7 points, 6.7 rebounds, 5.3 rebounds and 2.1 steals during his 12-year stint with the Bulls. Pip is one of the best two-way players to grace the league, who even was MJ’s “favourite teammate” helping him win 6 NBA championships.