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Scottie Pippen Reportedly 'So Angry' At Michael Jordan On How He Was Portrayed In The Last Dance

(via FR24 News English)

(via FR24 News English)

"The Last Dance" provided us all with an interesting and unparalleled perspective into Michael Jordan and his infamous Bulls team of the 90s. With all ten episodes now released, it's clear that the story provided a bonus for all sides. The fans got to witness greatness from a never before seen perspective and the team got renewed appreciation, interest, and respect from the fans regarding their basketball careers.

But these things can often come at a price and "The Last Dance" is no exception. Despite the overwhelming love for the documentary, not everyone is pleased with how it turned out.

Scottie Pippen has been strangely silent since the whole thing came out and reports indicate it may be because he hates how he was portrayed.

(via ESPN's Jackie MacMullan)

Michael Jordan professes his love for Scottie Pippen, anoints him the best teammate he ever had and acknowledges he couldn't have reached pro basketball's zenith without him. But Pippen has been notably silent since the documentary began its run last month, and those close to him say he's wounded and disappointed by his portrayal.

Nothing negative was said outright about Pippen. In fact, he was revered as a stellar teammate on more than one occasion in the doc. But, as MacMullan points out, he took offense to way in which several stories were told, including one about his ankle surgery in 1997.

By his final season in Chicago, Pippen was so bitter about being underpaid -- he was the subject of constant trade rumors -- that he eschewed offseason surgery on a ruptured tendon in his ankle and instead waited until the start of the 1997-98 season. It was a decision his coach, Phil Jackson, said he understood. Jordan did not.

"I thought Scottie was being selfish," Jordan declares in Episode 2 of the documentary.

The program also told fans about an incident in 1994, Pippen's infamous decision to refuse to enter Game 3 of the 1994 Eastern Conference semifinals.

In this week's installment of "The Last Dance" (9 p.m. ET on ESPN), the film offers a withering examination of Pippen's infamous decision to refuse to enter Game 3 of the 1994 Eastern Conference semifinals in the final seconds, because Jackson drew up the last play for Toni Kukoc instead of Pippen. It's compelling footage that picks at a scab nearly two and a half decades old, and includes a stunning comment by Pippen himself that reveals the residual scars of that incident.

It sounds like Scottie believes he was being portrayed as selfish or arrogant when, in reality, he's just "proud, gentle and soft-spoken, a complicated competitor who somehow never seemed to get his due (MacMullan)."

Indeed, Pippen was vastly underrated and underappreciated throughout his career and even today. He was essentially forced to play sidekick when he was one of the best players on the floor and gets little credit for his contributions during Chicago's run.

Dennis Rodman actually echoed the same thing in defense of Scottie.

"Scottie was so underrated -- and so underpaid. He should be holding his head up higher than Michael Jordan in this documentary," Rodman says. "I think a lot of people are now realizing what he went through. The kid was a hero, in a lot of ways, during those great Bulls runs."

So, in the end, some feelings were hurt -- and it's understandable why. Scottie never really got his due and, even though the documentary tried, it seems to have failed to portray Pippen in the way he wanted.

It's an unfortunate side-effect of what is otherwise a brilliant documentary.