Scottie Pippen retired from the NBA in 2004, but he still carries confidence on the basketball court, as evidenced by his message for President Barack Obama on Tuesday.
"I told him, 'Thank you and I wish you well tonight. But if you want to be a winner this afternoon, you better play with me,'" Pippen said, according to bulls.com.
Pippen joined Obama. along with some of the President's friends and advisers in a pickup game at the Hope Athletic Center on Chicago's West Side. Playing basketball has been an election day tradition for Obama dating back several years. Former Bulls Randy Brown and Jeff Sanders were also on hand.
Obama invited the Bulls to the White House after being elected, but this was the first time Pippen had met the President.
"When he first entered the gym, if you hadn't looked over to see him, you wouldn't have noticed," Pippen said. "It was surprisingly low key. He just came in and started shaking hands. He's someone who is very easy to approach."
Pippen did end up playing on Obama's team and claimed they rolled to an easy victory.
"I thought the lanes opened up when Michael Jordan used to drive," Pippen joked. "But when I saw the President drive, I thought they were bringing the whole motorcade through, the lane it was so wide.
"He's not an overly aggressive player, but he takes what the defense gives him. He's got a smooth game. He probably used to be a little more aggressive, but obviously he doesn't want to get hurt."
Redick reflects on Bulls:
Based on the first week of the NBA season, Orlando guard J.J. Redick will battle the Clippers' Jamal Crawford and Oklahoma City's Kevin Martin for the sixth man award. Redick averaged 22.5 points and 6 assists off the bench in the Magic's first two games.
He could have been doing this for the Bulls, theoretically. They signed the former Duke star to an offer sheet in 2010, which Orlando matched. The Bulls landed Ronnie Brewer a few hours later.
Redick's contract is up after this season and the Bulls will be looking for a long-term shooting guard. Would they try again with Redick?
"I try not to deal with hypotheticals," he said after the Magic's shootaround Tuesday, according to nba.com. "It was a great learning experience for me when I signed with the Bulls. It was going to be a chance where I would have an opportunity to earn a starting spot. When I came back to Orlando, I said, 'I'm not going to think about being a Chicago Bull. I'm not going to spend the next two or three years thinking, 'What if?'"
New Orleans coach Monty Williams was fined $25,000 by the league office for comments he made at the United Center on Saturday. With top draft pick Anthony Davis shelved that night due to a concussion, Williams made light of the NBA's concussion policy. … Bulls official scorer Bob Rosenberg, who's been with the team throughout its existence, worked his 2,000th game on Tuesday. … Start time for the Bulls' Nov. 17 road game against the Los Angeles Clippers has been changed from 2:30 to 8 p.m. Central time.