In 1991, Scottie Pippen signed an US$18m 7-year contract with the Chicago Bulls. Coming from a home that needed the money, this was a good move at the time as he also had a back problem. This deal would ensure his family to be covered should injuries prevent him from playing due to the physical nature of 90s basketball.
According to ESPN writer Marc J. Spears, Pippen was advised by his agents, Jimmy Sexton and Kyle Rote, not to sign the deal. In the series, “The Last Dance,” it was quoted that, Bulls Owner, Jerry Reinsdorf was keen on changing anything once you’ve signed on the dotted line.
Scottie Pippen did. By 1997, the NBA landscape had changed. Contracts are much larger. He wanted a bigger piece of the pie. He was the 6th highest player in the team and 122nd in the NBA. He was one of the best players at the time and is in the NBA’s 50 greatest players.
However, if the Chicago Bulls allowed Pippen to re-contract, this will set a precedent that NBA Teams can also re-contract if a player does not pan out.
Here are a few examples of the most recent bad contracts for NBA teams:
Mike Conley US$153 5 yearsIn 2013, the Memphis Grizzlies, aka, the Grind House, signed their PG of 9 years to a US$153m contract for 5 years. To be fair, he was a productive and reliable point guard. He’s never been named to the All-star team or played for team usa mens basketball but is paid much more than most in that line-up during the time of the contract. At the time, Stephen Curry was paid US$12.1m that year after leading the Warriors to a 2015 championship after being named MVP consecutively in 2015 and 2016. He was the 2nd highest paid player in the league right behind Lebron James.
Terry Rozier US$58m 3 yearsAfter showing much promise playing as a back-up point guard with the Boston Celtics, Terry Rozier felt that he was ready to be the primary ball handler of an NBA squad and so did the Charlotte Hornets. In 2019, they signed a 3 year US$58m contract only to figure out that rookie, Devonte Graham, was a better PG and fit for the team. Rozier is now back at the bench while Graham signed a US$4 3 year deal in 2018.
Chandler ParsonsSome might be asking, WHO? In 2016, the Memphis Grizzlies signed Chandler Parsons to a US$94 4-years guaranteed contract. He was a 2nd round pick in 2011 by the Houston Rockets and showed much promise. After his rookie deal, he signed with the Mavericks for a 4 year US$32m, which led to his 2016 deal with the Grizzlies.
John Wall US$207m 5 yearsIn 2017, the Washington Wizards signed a 5 year extension for their Superstar Point guard, John Wall to an extension. Ever since he signed it, there’s been nothing but dissension on the team as other players felt that they play better without him as the ball is not stuck in one man’s hands and Wall has been injured most of the time.
Nicolas Batum US$120m 5 yearsIn 2016, the Charlotte Hornets traded Noah Vonleh for Batum and signed him to a US$120m 5-year deal. He has not been an all star or played anywhere in that caliber. He’s been in and out of the line up due to injuries. The Hornets are now following a youth movement and Batum does not get much playing time.
Tim Hardaway Jr US$71m 4 yearsIn 2017, the New York Knicks, with their brilliant scouting report and player development, determined that Tim Hardaway is a player that must be signed long term. By 2018, he was traded to the Mavericks where he is the the 2nd highest paid player behind Porzingis while MVP Candidate, Luka Doncic, is only the 7th highest paid player in the team.
Gordon Hayward US$128m 4 years in 2017
Russel Westbrook US$205m 5-years in 2018 at 29 yrs old
Chris Paul US$159.7m 4-years signed in 2018 at 33 yrs old
Deandre Jordan US$40m 4-years in 2019 at 31 yrs old