Back in 1989, Michael Jordan revealed Scottie Pippen had all the abilities to be a superstar even before the Bulls legend was a mainstay.
No basketball player is considered to be as good as Chicago Bulls legend Michael Jordan. Many consider Mike to be the god of basketball. Looking at his long list of achievements and by hearing all the famous anecdotes it is understandable why he is considered to be the GOAT of basketball.
In his impressive 15-year-long basketball career, the 14-time All-Star helped his team become one of the greatest basketball dynasties of all time.
The 1990s Bulls, led by Jordan, managed to win two successful three-peats in an eight-year span. The 1995-1996 Bulls team even managed to have a flawless season winning 72 games in the regular season.
However, one can’t talk about Jordan’s greatness and not mention his “best teammate”, Scottie Pippen. Even though the two weren’t the best of friends off the court, they did share a really special bond on the court.
MJ and Pippen are definitely one of the greatest duos in the history of the sport. Unlike Jordan, Pip didn’t find success as soon as he stepped onto the court. However, Michael Jordan did believe in his swingman long before anyone knew about Scottie’s talents.
“Scottie Pippen is a late bloomer and has all the abilities to be a superstar”: Michael Jordan
Before the start of the 1989-1990 season, in an interview, a kid asked Mike about Scottie. His Airness mentioned how Scottie was destined for greatness by calling him a “late bloomer”. MJ further added:
“Scottie is a late bloomer, as we call it in the NBA. He doesn’t really start to perform his athletic skills until later in his years. He’s always been kind of overshadowed by not going to a Division I school, but he has a lot of ability, and he’s starting to come into his own right now.”
The 6-foot-8 forward must have heard this Jordan interview and taken inspiration from it. That very immediate season was Pip’s breakout season. He managed to start all 82 games of the season while getting selected for his first All-Star game.
That was when Scottie became the second-man that Mike needed to win the title. Even though Jordan and his Bulls lost to the “Bad Boy” Pistons in that Eastern Conference Finals, they did manage to dominate the league for years to come.
The two aren’t only two of the best players to suit up for the white and red Bulls, but also among the greatest to ever play the sport.