Chris Mullin had to make the insanely tough decision of having to rank Julius Erving, Scottie Pippen and Larry Bird.
Chris Mullin is a first-ballot Hall of Famer who was one of the best wing players in the NBA during the 90s. He was one of the greatest shooters in the history of the game. Mullin could score from anywhere, on any court against any team.
The man was born in Brooklyn and became a legend of the 7 boroughs before going on to St. John’s. Mullin played there for 4 years before the Golden State Warriors selected him with the 7th pick in 1985.
Mullin finished his career with averages of 18.2 points, 4.1 rebounds, and 3.5 assists. The great thing about his scoring was that Mullin took efficient shots and made them more often than not. His career field goal percentage of 50.9% and 3-point percentage of 38.4% is proof.
There’s little doubt that Mullin could have won an NBA championship had he gone the ring-chasing route of vets these days. But he chose to play his final season with Golden State after making the Finals with the Pacers in 2000.
Chris Mullin questionably cuts Julius Erving for Scottie Pippen, starts Larry Bird
Chris Mullin was on the Knuckleheads Podcast with Quentin Richardson and Darius Miles recently. The Warriors legend was one of the most candid interviewees ever on the pod.
Mullin was asked an extremely difficult ‘Start, Bench, Cut’ question by D-Miles midway through the interview. He played at the small forward position for a huge chunk of his career. So Miles’ question was regarding 3 absolute legends at the SF position.
Mullin replied that he’d start Larry Bird, bench Scottie Pippen and cut Julius Erving. This may be a surprise to a lot of NBA fans who watched the league in the 1970s.
Dr. J inspired a whole generation of above-the-rim players after him in the NBA. His influence on the game is up there with the likes of Kobe Bryant and Stephen Curry.
But Mullin had his own valid reasons for starting Scottie. He also attributed the evolution of the Small Forward position to Dr. J in his answer. Perhaps Mullin himself would pick Dr. J as his starter over Larry Bird on some other day.