Pippen shuts down dynasty Bulls vs. Warriors debate originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
Scottie Pippen says the words with gusto. He isn’t interested in a debate on the topic.
“Put this out there: The best team to win a championship is the ’96 Bulls,” he told NBC Sports Chicago while promoting a partnership with DICK’s Sporting Goods to give back to Chicago through a basketball camp and gear giveaway.
That statement came in response to Warriors forward Draymond Green’s recent assertion that the 2017 Golden State team headlined by Steph Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson and Green would have handily beaten the 1998 Chicago Bulls.
I’m watching the 98 Bulls vs Utah in the Finals… I can’t help but notice our 2017 team would’ve beaten these Bulls by a dub and these Jazz by 40 if they’re going to play these brands of basketball. And that’s why it’s dumb to compare Era’s
— Draymond Green (@Money23Green) July 25, 2022
Yes, Pippen opted against a direct comparison between the 2017 Warriors and 1998 Bulls. But his larger point regarding the greatness of those dynasty Bulls squads stands.
“Tell Draymond, I yell back,” Pippen chided.
What made that 1996 team, specifically, so great, in Pippen’s memory?
“Our record,” he said flatly.
Indeed, the Bulls amassed a 72-10 regular-season record that season, then marched through the playoffs with a 15-3 record.
The 2017 Warriors went 67-15 in the regular season, but bested the Bulls’ postseason mark by going 16-1, dropping only Game 4 of the NBA Finals against the Cavaliers at a time they possessed a 3-0 series lead.
Pippen didn’t get into specifics, but certainly any matchup between that Warriors squad and a Chicago team featuring Michael Jordan, Pippen, Toni Kukoč, Dennis Rodman and others would be quite a doozy.
Ultimately — and to Green’s point — such comparisons are folly because of the difference in play styles across eras and the hypothetical nature of the exercise.
Still, there is no doubt this debate will rage for a long time.
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