Scottie Pippen says Toni Kukoc shot was racist
One of the lowest moments of Scottie Pippen’s Hall of Fame career was when he refused to go into a Chicago Bulls playoff game with just seconds left in a tie game. Pippen was openly unhappy that Phil Jackson didn’t give him the final shot in that game, and apparently he felt Jackson’s decision was racially motivated.
Pippen spoke about the incident during a wide-ranging interview with Tyler Tynes of GQ, and he said you “need to read between the fine lines” to understand why he was so upset. He said he thought he deserved to be the one taking the final shot in a playoff game in Chicago’s first year without Michael Jordan. He also said he believed Jackson wanted to elevate Kukoc’s status.
“I been through all the ups and downs, the battles with the Pistons and now you gonna insult me and tell me to take it out? I thought it was a pretty low blow,” Pippen said. “I felt like it was an opportunity to give [Kukoc] a rise. It was a racial move to give him a rise. After all I’ve been through with this organization, now you’re gonna tell me to take the ball out and throw it to Toni Kukoc? You’re insulting me. That’s how I felt.”
Pippen said Jackson’s plan was to have him inbound the ball. He also questioned whether the play would have been drawn up for Kukoc if the score wasn’t tied, as he feels Jackson was setting Kukoc up to play hero in a no-lose situation.
“If he misses, he playing wit’ house money. He playing what I done earned here. Okay? I have been earning this for Michael Jordan for years and he gets the last shot,” Pippen added. “And I’m supposed to step inside and let Kukoc get in there?”
If you remember, Pippen was supposedly livid with the way he was portrayed in “The Last Dance” documentary last year. However, everything the documentary covered about that 1994 playoff game was obviously accurate.
Pippen was critical of Kevin Durant this week, and Durant fired back by bringing up that infamous 1994 playoff game.