Scottie Pippen, a legendary NBA player, left an indelible mark on the league during his career spanning from 1987-88 to 2003-04. Though he is best known for his tenure with the Chicago Bulls, Pippen also had stints with the Houston Rockets and the Portland Trail Blazers before his sentimental return to Chicago for his final year before retiring.
Having earned a remarkable $109.9 million in salary earnings throughout his professional basketball journey, Pippen's current net worth is estimated at $20 million in 2023. However, the years following his retirement were not without financial challenges for the six-time NBA champion.
Reports suggest that Pippen faced significant losses due to ill-advised investments, and a substantial portion of his wealth went towards child support payments, as he has eight children with four different women.
Questionable Financial Choices: Pippen's Career Earnings
Financial analysts have criticized Pippen's business acumen, contending that he did not make prudent financial decisions throughout his career.
Despite playing 13 seasons for the Bulls, Pippen's total earnings amounted to just $32.6 million. Notably, from 1991 to 1997, he earned an average annual salary of $2.7 million, a relatively modest amount given his contributions to the team's success during that period.
Reflecting on his past, Pippen revealed that his decision to sign a seemingly unfavorable contract with the Bulls was driven by his desire to support his family. Coming from a financially disadvantaged background, with his father and brother relying on wheelchairs, Pippen prioritized securing a stable future for his loved ones.
Fortunately, Pippen's financial situation improved with a one-year, $11 million contract with the Houston Rockets and a four-year, $66 million deal with the Portland Trail Blazers. Towards the end of his career, the Chicago Bulls made amends by signing Pippen to a two-year, $10 million agreement.
However, he played just one season before mutually parting ways with the team. Given his exceptional skills and accomplishments, many believe that Scottie Pippen would command a salary of at least $40 million per season in today's NBA.
His abilities as a top-tier small forward during his prime, coupled with his leadership in the absence of Michael Jordan, showcased his immense value to both the fans and the Bulls organization. Despite facing double and triple-teams, Pippen excelled in almost every statistical category and nearly propelled the Bulls to the Eastern Conference Finals.
Considering the evolving style of the game and Pippen's versatile skill set, it is evident that he would thrive in the modern era of basketball. His proficiency would undoubtedly attract the attention of teams vying for his services, while companies would eagerly seek his endorsement to promote their products.