The 1997-98 Chicago Bulls were an instant classic of the NBA and fans all over the world. Recommended to Michael Jordan for the last time before his second retirement, but also in the legends of the game like Scottie Pippen, Dennis Rodman.
The team that beat the odds, overcame off-court issues between Phil Jackson and Jerry Krause, and the influence of the media on their star rating. They all knew that it was going to be their last year together, but they put everything else to one side, fought it, and got the job done.
However, the rest of the Bulls roster that looked very different just a few months after winning their second three-peat. Krause was anxious to kickstart a rebuild, and he knew most of the players were up to the demands of a lot of money, and at the same time, he made a lot of moves.
So, what ever happened to those guys that beat the Utah Jazz in the Finals? Let’s take a closer look at where in the 1997-98 Bulls, and played for only a year after winning the Championship:
Dickey Simpkins – Was on the Bulls
Dickey Simpkins’ national basketball association (NBA journey, it took a couple of turns. He was first drafted by the Bulls in 1994, and then was traded to the Warriors for Scott Burrell, but the Golden State is, apart from him mid-season, and he came back that year in Chicago, something that the competition doesn’t allow for more.
Simpkins’ contributions to the title run were modest, to say the least, but they remained in the 1999-20 season. He was then signed by the Sonics, Lakers, and Hawks. prior to his retirement in 2002.
Randy, Brown has Remained with the Bulls
Just as Simpkins, mr Brown was not the Bulls’ biggest contributor in the playoffs, even though he’s played more than 14 minutes off the bench during their three-peat run. That number increased to 29 for the reconstruction of the first year.
Brown stayed with the team until the end of the season 1999-00, it is to be a member of the Boston Celtics for two years before retiring as a member of the Phoenix Suns. He has never averaged more than 8.8 points per game in his career.
Bill Wennington, Stayed with the Bulls
Bill Wennington was one of the first guys off the bench for Phil Jackson’s Chicago Bulls during their second three-peat. However, his contributions were far beyond the stat sheet, as he was more of a locker room and a veteran presence type of guy.
Wennington and his team-friendly deal that has remained with Jerry Krause and the Bulls are in for another season. He made 38 appearances (3 starts) with the team before joining the Sacramento Kings for the final year of his career.
Jud Buechler – Detroit Pistons
Jud Buechler is not a lot of minutes during his stint with the Chicago Bulls, just like he had Scottie Pippen and Toni Kukoc are counting on the majority of playing time at the small forward spot, and Ron Harper and Steve Kerr on the other.
So, he decided to join the rest of the Bulls, ” a life-long rivals, the Detroit Pistons, in the year after completing their three-peat. He would stay with them for three seasons, with an average of 3.6 points per game for the Suns, and finally the Magic.
Scott Burrell New Jersey Nets
Most of the people I know, Scott Burrell, during The “Last Dance”, as Michael Jordan’s favorite target in practice, though, he never seemed to care. However, it was clear that he had to have a change of scenery after the season, 1997-98.
Burrell is a member of the New Jersey Nets as a free agent in the summer and an average of 6.3 points per game over a two season span with them. He then went full circle and retired to the Charlotte Hornets, the team that drafted him in the first place.
Luc Longley Phoenix Suns
Even though his name is not often mentioned, Luc Longley actually played a big role in the Bulls ‘ three-peat, as he’s started all 6 games of the NBA Finals, ahead of Dennis Rodman, if he’s a better matchup due to his offensive skills.
Longley, however, do not be reluctant in order to leave the team if he didn’t want to be a part of a recovery toward the last part of his career. He was traded to the Suns, and it stayed there for a couple of seasons before he is eliminated by the Knicks in last year.
Steve Kerr – San Antonio Spurs
Steve Kerr knew how to make the most of their talents and to surround themselves by an elite group. This is the main reason as to why he is in the Gregg Popovich and the San Antonio Spurs via a trade, after the three-peat to keep its Championship streak alive.
Kerr, the last player to win four straight Championships in the NBA’s history. His hard work, as well as three-point shooting was tailor-made for the Spurs ‘ system. He stayed with them for three seasons, played for the Blazers and was back on the track to win his 5th ring before retiring.
Ron Harper – Was for the Bulls
Ron Harper also played a major role in the Chicago Bulls’ three Championships. He was also a reckless defender who could guard multiple spots on the court, and he did not hesitate to embrace a lesser role in the attack to help the team win.
Harper remained with the Bulls for one more season, even though he’s only 35 appearances with the team this year. He was later released by the team, and be re-united with Phil Jackson joining the Lakers, where he won a couple of rings.
Toni Kukoc -he Stayed for the rest of the Bulls
Toni Kukoc of the competition, the 25-year-old, I wasn’t on that team, save the prospect that they were hoping him to be when Jordan, Pippen, and Rodman left the team. He’s a smart veteran player who could score in bunches.
So Krause decided to take his favourite European player to be around for another year-and-a-half. He’s bounced around the league for a while now, playing for the Philadelphia 76ers, Atlanta Hawks, and finally the Milwaukee Bucks.
Dennis Rodman – Los Angeles Lakers
There were some concerns about Rodman’s ability to play at the highest level, but without the motivation of playing for a Championship, and his teammates are pushing him. In the end, it turned out like this.
Rodman is a member of the Suns ‘ half of the lock of the season in 1998-99, but only 23 appearances (11 starts) with the team. He was released at the end of the season, and he signed with the Dallas Mavericks, but was waived shortly after.
Scottie Pippen – Houston Rockets
The Chicago Bulls finally did Scottie Pippen right in and helped him out of a sign-and-trade with the Houston Rockets in a very, very lucrative deal. The Rockets wanted to pair him up with Charles Barkley and to make the most of Jordan’s retire, again.
However, there was some bad blood between the two superstars, and that the experiment did not pay off. Pippen was traded to the Blazers a year later, and he remained there for four years before they returned in order to retire as a Chicago Bull.
Michael Jordan – Retired
On a surprising note, Michael Jordan announced that he was leaving the game. This time, however, he was not going to be coming back, at least for the Chicago Bulls. He was off the grid for some time before he was with the Wizards.
Jordan returned to the league as the Wizards’ president of basketball operations, and stated that he was 99.9% sure that he was never to play again. However, he decided that he would have to apply in 2001 for his final two seasons.
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