Skip to main contentAccess keys helpA-Z index

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
watch listen BBC Sport BBC Sport
UK version International version About the versions|Low graphics|Help
RELATED BBC SITES
Last Updated: Wednesday, 20 August, 2003, 23:23 GMT 00:23 UK
The greatest team in history - day four
Brazil 1970 Wales 1976 McLaren 1988 Chicago Bulls Australia cricket

Which is the greatest sports team in history?

This week, the claims of five different teams in five different sports have been put forward by the sporting heroes who knew them best.

And we are asking for your vote on which deserves to be hailed as the greatest of all time.

We opened with the 1970 Brazil football team, continued with Wales' Grand Slam-winning rugby side of 1976 and then moved on to the dominant McLaren F1 team of 1988.

Here former player Steve Kerr explains what made the Chicago Bulls basketball side which won the NBA title in 1995-96 one of the finest teams in the history of sport.

Kerr, who retired from the NBA two weeks ago, is the all-time NBA leader in three-point shooting accuracy and played a full role as the Bulls swept to the title.


Chicago Bulls
By Steve Kerr

I played in the NBA for 15 years and this was definitely the best team I saw during that time.

Phil Jackson's coaching had a lot to do with it.

He had such a knack for getting the most out of every player and finding roles for everybody. So the team was perfectly designed.

Obviously without Michael Jordan none of it could have happened, but the pieces fitted perfectly around him.

ACHIEVEMENTS
NBA champions: 1995-96
72-10: Best regular season record of all time
Michael Jordan: Regular season MVP, All-Star MVP, Finals MVP, leading scorer (30.4 ppg), All-NBA team
Scottie Pippen: All-NBA team
Dennis Rodman: Rebound leader (14.9rpg), All-Defensive team
Toni Kukoc: Sixth man award
Steve Kerr: Second in three-point shooting (.515)
Phil Jackson: Coach of the year

When Michael came back in 1994 for the last 15 or 20 games after taking time off to play baseball he showed flashes of his old self.

However, he also had flashes of mortality - he was up and down - so at the start of the next season I wasn't really sure what to expect.

But right away, from the first day back in training, it was apparent that he was on a mission.

That was the summer he filmed the "Space Jam" movie.

And while out in LA, he basically let it be known that any of the NBA guys who were in town should come and play with him.

They had unbelievable games all summer long.

That meant that when Michael came to training camp he was in incredible shape and incredibly motivated.

That was also the year we picked up Dennis Rodman.

Our weakness the year before had been interior defence and rebounding but that was Rodman's speciality - every rebound was his.

Defensively he just pestered people - muscled them - and did anything he had to do to keep them from scoring.

So right away, within a few days of the camp opening, it was apparent we were going to be awesome.

When you combined Rodman with the perimeter defence of Scottie Pippen, Michael and Ron Harper it was lethal and teams really struggled to score against us.

I don't think a lot of people realised just how good our defence was because everybody focused on Michael's offence.

CHICAGO BULLS 1995-96
Basketball legend Michael Jordan prepares to shoot for the Chicago Bulls
Michael Jordan - Guard
Scottie Pippen - Forward
Dennis Rodman - Forward
Ron Harper - Guard
Luc Longley - Centre
Toni Kukoc - Forward
Steve Kerr - Guard
Phil Jackson - Coach

But our defence was as good as that of any team that I have seen in the league in a long time.

Everyone concentrates on Michael but he knew he could not do it on his own and he says he couldn't have won all those championships without Scottie.

Pippen was awesome - the perfect complement to Michael.

Although he was a forward on the roster he was really our point guard. He handled the ball, he distributed the ball, he kept everybody happy, and he was an incredible defensive player. He was the glue.

Michael was spectacular but Scottie was the guy who would hold it all together on the court.

And there was also Toni Kukoc, who would come off the bench as our X-factor, giving something extra to the team.

The rest was down to coach Jackson.

A lot of people do not believe that he is a great coach and say "well, he had all that talent".

But he had a much more difficult job than people understood because he had to mesh all those egos together and get everybody to play well together.

He was the perfect man for the job.

I think his speciality was getting people to defer to the team's ultimate goal and he was awesome.

We had a real winning mentality and everybody would be furious when we lost. Michael set the tone and if we did lose we would then go on a long winning run again.

Interview by Kevin Asseo




Name
Your vote goes to
Your second choice
Comments

E-mail services | Sport on mobiles/PDAs

MMIX

Back to top

Sport Homepage | Football | Cricket | Rugby Union | Rugby League | Tennis | Golf | Motorsport | Boxing | Athletics | Snooker | Horse Racing | Cycling | Disability sport | Olympics 2012 | Sport Relief | Other sport...

BBC Sport Academy >> | BBC News >> | BBC Weather >>
About the BBC | News sources | Privacy & Cookies Policy | Contact us
banner watch listen bbc sport