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McGrady claims that the Bulls wouldn’t have won more titles if they’d traded Pippen for him

Last week, Tracy McGrady told an interesting story about his experience on draft night back in 1997.

According to McGrady, the Toronto Raptors attempted to trade him to the Chicago Bulls for Scottie Pippen after he was drafted ninth overall, but Michael Jordan vetoed the deal.

The Bulls went on to complete their second championship three-peat that season, but Jordan was gone the following summer and Chicago’s fortunes left with him.

The landscape of the NBA would’ve been much different in those days had the deal gone through. McGrady went on to become one of the best scorers in the NBA until injuries wore him down over a decade later, and the Bulls are still looking for another title nearly 20 years later.

However, McGrady thinks Jordan and Chicago made the right move by not trading for him. In McGrady’s opinion, the Bulls would not have won the championship in 1998 if they had him instead of Pippen, and he thinks M.J. would’ve retired a year earlier (not including his comeback with the Washington Wizards):

McGrady’s comments:

“They did the right thing, they won another championship.

“I actually think M.J. would’ve retired earlier. You’ve got an 18-year old kid who hasn’t proven himself and you’ve got Scottie, who just won two championships. Yeah, Mike probably would’ve shut it down earlier.

“I doubt [that the Bulls still would’ve won the 1998 championship], I wasn’t even developed yet.”

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