The 1995-96 Chicago Bulls are widely considered to the best team in NBA history, before this year that is. This Bulls team had the best record in league history with 72 wins and 10 losses in a single season, which no one thought would ever be broken. This season, the Warriors, led by the 3-point shooters Steph Curry and Klay Thompson, broke the record winning 73 games.
While the 1995-96 Bulls still may be the best team of all time, but it is now up for debate. People start to question whether the NBA is easier now than it was in the mid-90s. I think the Warriors still have to win the championship to even be in consideration for the "best team of all time" title. Even though the Warriors broke the win record, I still think that the Bulls would beat the Warriors in a seven game series and are the better team.
Since the 1995-96 Bulls are a hot topic, I thought it would be appropriate to look back at the members of what I think is the greatest team of all time and see what they are up to now. I'll be taking a look at all of the players as well as the head coach and the general manager of the squad. You may think that the Warriors are a better team than the 1995-96 Bulls, but regardless you have to respect the greats.
This team was legendary, there is no doubt about it. Where the players are today is both fascinating and maybe even a little sad. Some of these guys' circumstances are different than they were 20 years ago when they were known as the best players in the world. Some of these guys have stayed in the spotlight while others have ridden off into the sunset. Either way, it's always interesting to hear about the players of yesterday. You may now where some of these guys are but I guarantee you won't know where most of them are today.
Find out where the 1995-96 Chicago Bulls are now.
17 Phil Jackson
Phil Jackson is coaching legend. In his tenure with the Bulls he coached them to six championships. The Bulls made the playoffs every single season Jackson coached them.
Today Phil Jackson is the president and general manager of the New York Knicks and is still the NBA coach with the most finals championships of all time. He said he has no interest in returning to the Lakers despite many rumors saying otherwise. Jackson was also diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2011 but after a successful fight and surgeries, he is healthy again.
16 Jerry Krause
Although there was tons of drama between Phil Jackson and Krause, they did win six championships together. Incredibly, they could've been even better if they got along well. Krause retired in 2003 and it is suspected one of the reasons was his obesity. He then went to the MLB to become a scout for the Yankees, and later the Mets. Most recently he worked in the front office for the Arizona Diamondbacks. Krause can't seem to stay away from the sports world but 2015 was his last.
This year will be the first that he isn't working for a sports team. What is keeping him out of sports for the first time in five decades, is his osteomyelitis, aka a bone infection. He has been in sports since 1961 so this is new to him.
15 Jack Haley
Jack Haley was drafted by the Bulls in 1987 out of UCLA. After playing for Chicago in 1988-89, he bounced around Europe and the NBA until he returned to the Bulls for the 1995-96 season. Haley didn't contribute in the least to the team as he sat out every game but one during the regular season and playoffs due to knee tendinitis. He was basically a fan for the Bulls and could be seen nightly cheering from the bench.
After his career, Haley stayed on the NBA path like many other players do after their careers end. He was an assistant coach for the Nets. Sadly, Haley died last year in 2015 from heart disease. Haley had a wife, two sons and he was only 51 years of age when he passed.
14 Dickey Simpkins
Dickey Simpkins, the 6'9 center out of Providence University, was selected 21st overall in the 1994 NBA Draft. He won championships with the Bulls in 1996 and 1997, but he wasn't even on the active playoff roster. He had a lackluster NBA tenure and played the majority of his career overseas and in the Continental Basketball Association.
For some time, Simpkins worked for ESPN as an analyst. Later he founded the company, Next Level Performance. Simpkins currently works as a scout for the Charlotte Hornets. While he wasn't a great player for the Bulls, he has been involved with basketball his whole life. He has even been a motivational speaker for athletes.
13 James Edwards
James Edwards was just lucky to be on the Bulls during this season. He wasn't much of a contributor and this season was the last of his long 19-year career. He was 40 years old when he was with the Bulls but ironically he played for Jordan's arch rival Detroit Pistons when they won championships in 1989 and 1990.
Nowadays, he works out basketball players who are looking to improve their game. He trains people from kids to NBA players. Edwards has two grown children, a son and a daughter.
12 Randy Brown
Randy Brown was drafted by the Sacramento Kings in 1991. He signed with the Bulls prior to the 1995-96 season. He was a solid contributor off the bench for the Bulls. Luckily for Brown, he came to the Bulls just as they began their second three-peat.
Brown has continued his tenure with the Bulls, not as a player but rather an assistant coach. He started his coaching career with the Kings soon after he retired. Following his experience with the Kings, he resumed his relationship with Bulls becoming their director of player development. His role soon morphed into assistant coach where he is today. This is one guy who has made the most of his opportunities.
11 Jason Caffey
Jason Caffey was a power forward out of Alabama who was drafted by he Bulls with the 20th pick in the 1995 NBA Draft. He won two championships with the Bulls, one with the 1995-96 team and another the following season. In the middle of the next season, before his three-peat would've occurred, he was traded to the Warriors where he really blossomed into a solid NBA player. His scoring average jumped from 7 ppg to 20 ppg.
For a short time Caffey was the head coach of the Mobile Bay Hurricanes. Currently, Caffey is broke, has 10 children and owes $200,000 in child support. Unfortunately, he is yet another example of a life of "excess and poor financial decisions." He once had it all, but now has lost everything.
10 Jud Buechler
Jud Buechler was a small forward out of Arizona who played for the Bulls from 1994 to 1998. It was a good time to be a Bull. Buechler was key off of the bench, providing a solid three-point threat. He played 12 years in the NBA but his best statistical years didn't come from his tenure with the Bulls but rather the Warriors.
Buechler is currently the assistant coach for a women's volleyball team called the San Diego WAVE. The club team is coached by another former NBA player, Wayne Kreklow. Like Buechler, Kreklow also won an NBA championship, his with the 1980-81 Celtics. They both say that they love the family aspects of basketball and volleyball.
9 Bill Wennington
Bill Wennington was a part of the Bulls second three-peat which obviously includes the 1995-96 season. A Canadian, Wennington played for his home country in the 1984 Olympics when he was just a student at St. John's University in New York. For the Bulls, Wennington's best season was his first, when he averaged seven points-per-game.
Wennington is actually still with the Bulls. Following his career, which ended in 2000, he became the Bulls' radio color commentator. What a great way to stay in the game for a basketball lifer.
8 John Salley
John Salley is the first player in NBA history to win championships with three different teams. Even more impressive is that all three championships came in different decades. He and Tim Duncan are the only two players to ever accomplish that feat.
Salley has had an eventful life after basketball. Unlike most NBA players who don't do much after their basketball career, Salley has been in the spotlight ever since. Once his basketball career was over, he acted in the movies Bad Boys and Bad Boys 2. Neither of those films had anything to do with his championship years with the Detroit Pistons, also known as the "Bad Boys."
He has also been on a ridiculous amount of TV programs, way too many to list here. As if he weren't busy enough, he also is the Ambassador for Operation Smile, a nonprofit medical service helping children around the world. Salley is a great example for retiring NBA players.
7 Toni Kukoč
Toni Kukoč, who is from Croatia, was drafted by the Bulls in 1990 but didn't come to the team until 1993. Unfortunately for Kukoč, Jordan had just retired so when he arrived, the Bulls weren't the championship caliber team they once were. As you might have heard, Jordan eventually returned and Kukoč got to play with him, winning three titles from 1996-1998. Kukoč also won NBA 6th Man of the Year Award in the 95-96 season.
These days Kukoč is the Special Advisor to the President and COO of the Chicago Bulls, Jerry Reinsdorf. A solid organization like the Chicago Bulls is obviously an attractive place to be for former players and Kukoc has made it pay off.
6 Ron Harper
Ron Harper played for four different teams in his NBA career. In 1994, the free-agent Harper signed with the Bulls, which was a great move on his part. Michael Jordan was not yet on the team, but soon they would be teammates. Harper was a solid defender and three-point threat for the Bulls and definitely played a key role in them claiming the 72-10 record in 1995-96.
Today, Harper resides in New Jersey where he comes home to two sons and a daughter. Both of his sons play basketball and he says he really enjoys watching them play. Harper also was an assistant coach for the Detroit Pistons from 2005-2007, but his contract was not renewed. Harper, a stutterer for most of his life, generously donates time to the National Stuttering Association.
5 Steve Kerr
Steve Kerr, out of Arizona, was a serious sharpshooter and indispensable to the Bulls second 3-peat. Kerr had his best seasons as a Bull, averaging 8 ppg in four straight seasons. But it was in the 1997 finals when Kerr was at his finest. In Game 6, versus the Jazz, Jordan put his trust in Kerr and he came through. He hit the shot and the Bulls won the NBA Finals. Clutch.
As you probably know Kerr is now coaching the Warriors. It's ironic because the Warriors are the ones who broke the Bulls record. I don't think Kerr would have a problem with anyone calling the Warriors better than the Bulls team he once played for. He can rest assured the he played a huge role in the two of the greatest teams of all time.
4 Luc Longley
Luc Longley was the first ever Australian to play in the NBA. He started at center for the Bulls during their second three peat. The 7'2 Longley had his best season in 1997. He averaged 11 points and 6 rebounds per game. Although you may think a guy as tall as he was would grab more boards, he was still a solid player.
Longley still lives in Australia but visits the Bulls from time to time. He has two grown children. Longley's wife is a TV celebrity chef and he says he is constantly busy and up to something. In 2013, he was named an assistant coach of the Australian Boomers, the men's national basketball team. Otherwise, Longley is pretty much just an average guy nowadays, like the rest of us.
3 Dennis Rodman
Dennis "The Worm" Rodman was (is) one crazy dude. Every night this rebounding maniac gave it his all and laid his body on the line. Every team needs one player like Rodman in the organization. Not to mention Rodman won the Defensive Player of the Year award in two consecutive seasons. All "The Worm" knew was basketball.
Rodman is all over the news these days... and not for particularly good reasons. A few years ago Rodman flew to North Korea to meet Kim Jong-un, and he made several more visits to follow. Rodman is believed to be the first American to meet with Kim. Since meeting with Kim, Rodman has stressed what a "good guy" Kim is and that the rest of the world should open it's eyes. Meeting with a maniac like Kim Jong-un is the kind crazy behavior for which Rodman has become known.
2 Scottie Pippen
Scottie Pippen is often overshadowed when people talk about NBA legends. Some may say the Jordan carried him and that he wasn't that good, but Pippen's best season came when Jordan had retired. Just imagine what Pippen could have done if he didn't have to play second fiddle to the GOAT himself.
Now, Pippen strives to live a normal life. Trying to raise seven kids, Pippen has his hands full. He does find time however to watch the Warriors. He says he is one of the team's biggest fans, but didn't want them to beat the record. You can follow Pippen on his Instagram to get his daily updates. You may even get to see him get into a feud with Shaq.
1 Michael Jordan
The greatest "player" of all time is of course going to be on the greatest "team" of all time. Right? What is there really to say about Jordan? The guy has done it all, six championships, MVPs, baseball (okay, that last one didn't go so well). He was possibly the greatest combination of talent, athleticism and work ethic ever, which makes him the GOAT. Argue if you want but you'll lose.
Today, Jordan is an owner the Charlotte Hornets. While the franchise did not get off to a great start while they were the Bobcats, the Hornets have turned it around and became a playoff team. Jordan can be seen on the sideline of almost every Hornets game. It's great to see Jordan still around the game and still having as much of an impact as he does. He even occasionally drops in to Bulls' practice to surprise the players. Just what you'd expect from the "greatest of all time."
Leave A Comment
Looking for an AD FREE EXPERIENCE on TheSportster?Get Your Free Access Now!