Scottie Pippen Addresses Being Called Michael Jordan’s Sidekick + Claims Kevin Durant Needs To Better Utilize His Team: As Great As He Is, There’s A Cap To His Talent
Scottie Pippen recently sat with GQ to speak on a variety of topics–most notably, his thoughts on various former and current NBA stars.
He first spoke on his relationship with former Chicago Bulls teammate Michael Jordan. Specifically, he spoke on his reaction to consistently being referred to as Michael Jordan‘s sidekick, saying:
“That was the public perspective. That ain’t Michael’s fault. He wasn’t writing the articles. But it was the [media] cheerleaders that were behind Michael Jordan that were doing whatever they can to appease him, to get his vote. They felt they could get close to him.”
Then, Scottie Pippen reflected on how basketball is truly a team sport that necessitates great teamwork–not necessarily great individuals. Additionally, he took the time to throw a little shade at Charles Barkley, claiming:
“You know, there’s really no great players in basketball. Basketball is built on great teams. You’ve got ‘good’ players. But when you talk about great players, you can only give them greatness because what? The team. You know? You can sit here and argue that Charles Barkley was a great player. But he gets diminished why? Because he never won. He never was on a winning team. So when he sit up on that stage with Shaq and Kenny, they can diminish him at any moment. As great of a player as he is, they can make him the size of a period. Kenny Smith can make himself bigger than Charles Barkley on that stage because why? He won. Yeah, Charles in the Hall of Fame, but when you talk about success in winning, you don’t speak of Charles Barkley’s name.”
On a similar note regarding the team effort of basketball, he stated:
“Michael Jordan didn’t beat [any teams]. The Chicago Bulls beat them. The Chicago Bulls were the better team. It’s not an individual game, you can’t go into basketball and beat nobody with an individual record. And I used this example of what happened to Kevin Durant just the other day: this is the first time we’ve ever really seen Kevin Durant have to be the man and bring the team home. We ain’t never really had to see that because he’s had [Russell] Westbrook, Steph Curry, Klay [Thompson]. He’s been beating people, definitely in Golden State, by committee. With a team. He did that, but that team already knew how to win without KD.”
He continued, focusing on the comparison between Kevin Durant and LeBron James:
“This is no knock to KD, but they asked me, ‘Has he surpassed LeBron James?’ And my answer was: LeBron James knows team basketball better than KD. KD can score better than LeBron, probably always have been able to. But has he surpassed LeBron? Naw. He tried to beat the Milwaukee Bucks instead of utilizing his team. You see what I’m saying? LeBron James would’ve figured out how to beat them and he wouldn’t have been exhausted and he may not have taken the last shot. But LeBron ain’t KD, and KD ain’t LeBron. KD is a shooter, a scorer. But he doesn’t have what LeBron has… as great as [KD’s] offense was, it turned out to be his worst enemy because he didn’t know how to play team basketball when it came down to it. He kept trying to go punch for punch.
Scottie Pippen proceeded to claim that Kevin Durant needed to learn how to better utilize his teammates and not try to put in all the work himself, specifically referencing his recent game against the Milwaukee Bucks:
“He needs to learn how to utilize his teams. He has to learn how to set up his teammates to be better. That’s it. As great as he is, there’s a [cap] to his [talent]. He could’ve easily made that three, killed them in regulation, and we wouldn’t have been talking about this. But I knew going into overtime, he wasn’t gonna make it. He was taking all the shots. You done played the whole game, bro! And they’ve got guys physically wearing you down. You gonna lose… How are the f**k are you gonna win? [You] played the whole f***ing game.”
What do you think about Scottie Pippen’s claims? Comment down below to let us know!