Karl Malone Picked Scottie Pippen and Magic Johnson Over Michael Jordan: “I Watched Scottie When the Bulls Weren’t Good”

Published 11/21/2021, 12:30 PM EST


NBA stars widely admire Michael Jordan for his NBA achievements. The Chicago Bulls legend remained a key player in a star-studded roster for the franchise. NBA legends like Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman, and others played alongside Jordan at Chicago. Jordan helped the NBA popularize the sport of basketball across the globe.

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Lately, Utah Jazz legend and NBA great Karl Malone spoke about Michael Jordan and some of his Bulls teammates. Malone, a two time NBA MVP, was speaking on the ‘Dan Patrick Show’. The clip shows the host questioning Malone about two players from the 1992 ‘Dream Team’ that he would make a team with. Malone astonishingly left out Jordan in a controversial decision.

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Malone said, “I would have to say, I would have to start it with Scottie Pippen,” he added saying, “Do you remember the time when Michael retired? – the second, third time – I watched Scottie Pippen when the Chicago Bulls wasn’t really good. And Scottie led that team in every statistical category. And I just remember that.” He chose his second player, saying, “My second one would be Magic.”

Jordan announced his sudden retirement before the start of the 1993-94 season. In his absence, Pippen stepped up and guided the Bulls. He led the Bulls in scoring, assists, and blocks, and was second in the NBA in steals per game. The Bulls relied on their new talisman, Pippen, to support a few new signings at that time.

SALT LAKE CITY, UT – JUNE 11: Michael Jordan #23 and Scottie Pippen #33 of the Chicago Bulls celebrate after winning game five of the 1997 NBA Finals against the Utah Jazz on June 11, 1997 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Andy Hayt/NBAE/Getty Images)

Jordan started his NBA career with the Bulls in 1984 as the third overall pick of the 1984 NBA draft. He won six NBA championships with the Bulls. Jordan also won an Olympic gold medal with the US men’s national basketball team.

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Jordan also made a huge number of rivals as he dominated the league over the years. One of these rivals was former NBA player Sherman Douglas, who was active between 1989 to 2001.

A particular confrontation between Douglas and Jordan came when the former played for the New Jersey Nets. The clip shows Jordan blocking Douglas’ three-pointer attempt for the Nets and later trash talking to him.

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Douglas, however, replied to Jordan with more trash talk. Jordan reacts with surprises and casually laughs off Douglas’ trash talk attempt. He then proceeds to the bench and talks to NBA legend and then Bulls coach Phil Jackson. The duo shares a laugh as they presumably made light of Dougals’ attempts to trash talk ‘His Airness’.

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Shalom Saldanha

148 articles

Shalom Saldanha is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. Currently pursuing his journalism degree, he has previously worked as a sports corresspondent for India Shorts/Business Upturn. A Giannis Antetokounmpo and Bucks fan, Shalom primarily got into the sport after discovering that he shared a mutual love for Arsenal with the 'Greek Freak'.

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