Scottie Pippen says his decade of hard work for the Chicago Bulls has gone unappreciated, and he doesn’t expect to play for the five-time NBA champions after next season.
The star forward, almost traded to the Boston Celtics last week, told the Chicago Sun-Times that management’s conduct makes him feel like his years with the team “ain’t worth a damn.”
“I’ve put in 10 years here,” he said. “I mean 10 good years of hard work. If you’re going to trade me, let me at least know that you appreciate my 10 years first. … I’m a guy who is easy to get along with and I’ll put up with a lot of things. But not dishonesty. Don’t disrespect me, lie about it and then come smile in my face and act like nothing’s wrong.”
Pippen said he would not have minded being traded to the Celtics or the Los Angeles Lakers because “I have much respect for Rick Pitino and for what he’s going to try to do with the Celtics. I have a lot of respect for the Lakers organization, too.”
Pippen, 31, said he’ll play out the final year on his contract with the Bulls, then become a free agent.
Free agent list gaudy
Michael Jordan and Patrick Ewing became free agents at midnight, but it’s unlikely they’ll be switching teams.
Other free agent veterans include Utah guard Jeff Hornacek, Portland forward Clifford Robinson, Detroit guard Joe Dumars and Orlando guard Nick Anderson. Plus there are Bulls teammates Dennis Rodman and Brian Williams, Rex Chapman of Phoenix, Voshon Lenard of Miami and Walt Williams of Toronto.
Heat to go international
The Miami Heat will play their first international NBA preseason game in Tel Aviv on Oct. 12, 1998, against Maccabi Tel Aviv.
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