It was just recently that the 23rd anniversary of the iconic crossover move by Michael Jordan sealed the 1998 NBA championship for the Chicago Bulls. The “Last Dance” Bulls in 1998 cemented their legacy as one of the greatest basketball franchises of all time by winning their sixth championship during the 1990s.
The two three-peats (1991-1993 and 1996-1998) were highlighted by a 6-0 overall record by Jordan and Co. However, the 1997-1998 season was potentially the most special one given the overwhelming pressure and distractions outside the United Center.
It’s been over 20 years for some of these players since they last suited up with an NBA team. While some have stopped playing basketball, that doesn’t mean their affiliation with the league is over. Let’s take a look at some of the most iconic players from that 1998 Bulls team and see what they are up to now.
Dickey Simpkins – Scout For The Washington Wizards
Simpkins appeared in just 21 games during the 1997-1998 season and averaged 11.3 minutes per game. He averaged 3.7 points and 1.5 rebounds.
After Simpkins was released by the Bulls in 2000, he would spend a season in Greece before joining the Atlanta Hawks in 2001-2002. He only played one game and later enjoyed an international career that included Russia, Puerto Rico, Lithuania, Spain, the Philippines, Lebanon, and Germany.
Since then, Simpkins has worked as a college basketball analyst for ESPN. He previously served as a scout for the Charlotte Hornets and currently serves the same position for the Wizards.
Randy Brown – Student At New Mexico State University
During his tenure with the Bulls, Brown won three championships as a member of the team’s bench. During the 1997-1998 season, Brown played in 71 games, averaged 16.2 minutes, 4.1 points, and 1.3 rebounds per game.
Brown served time as an assistant for the Chicago Bulls from 2015-2018, but he has since returned to the classroom in recent development. Brown, a former Aggie himself, has returned to school to finish his bachelor’s degree. Reportedly, Brown has hopes of coaching at his alma mater, but a degree is required.
Bill Wennington – Bulls Color Commentator
Altogether, Wennington enjoyed a successful NBA career playing alongside Ron Harper, Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, and Dennis Rodman. During the Bulls’ run, Wennington was the backup center to Luc Longley.
Off the bench, Wennington was a key part of the team’s second three-peat. His best season came in 1995-1996, where he averaged 5.3 points and 2.5 rebounds. By the end of 1998, his minutes were down to just 9.7 per game, while he averaged 3.5 points and 1.7 rebounds.
After leaving the league in 2000, he has since served alongside Chuck Swarski on the radio broadcasts of Bulls’ games as the color commentator. He has held this position for 15 years. In 2015, he was inducted into the Canadian Basketball Hall of Fame.
Jud Buechler – Assistant Coach For The New York Knicks
Buechler was an end of the bench piece that averaged 10 minutes of playing time just once. His career-high with the Bulls was 3.8 points per game. After winning three titles from 1996-1998, Buechler played with the Detroit Pistons, Orlando Magic, and Phoenix Suns to conclude a 12-year career. He has previously served as an assistant coach under Luke Walton and David Fizdale.
After Fizdale was released by the Knicks, Buechler remained on the team’s coaching staff. He currently serves under Tom Thibodeau.
Scott Burrell – Head Coach Of Southern Connecticut
Burrell played just one season with the Bulls and it was the 1997-1998 year. He played in 80 games, averaged 13.7 minutes per game, and provided 5.2 points and 2.5 rebounds. Burrell shot 42.4% from the field.
Before the 2006-2007 season, Burrell was hired as an assistant coach for the Colorado 14ers of the NBA D-League (G-League today). He then joined Quinnipiac in his hometown of Hamden, Connecticut, and helped the team win a regular season Northeast Conference title and qualify for the NIT Tournament.
In July 2015, Burrell was hired as the head men’s basketball coach at Southern Connecticut State University, a Division II school in New Haven. He helped the team win a Northeast-10 Conference Southwest Division title in his first season and won the conference Coach of the Year title. As of the 2019-2020 season, he owns a 91-56 record as head coach.
Steve Kerr – Head Coach Of Golden State Warriors
From 1993 to 1998, Kerr was a major piece of the team’s second unit. Kerr played over 20 minutes per game and shot over 40% from the three-point range in all five seasons. That included two seasons shooting over 50% from beyond the arc.
Kerr has landed on his feet since exiting the league. After a successful career as the General Manager of the Phoenix Suns from 2004-2010, Kerr spent time as a TNT broadcaster. In 2014, he was hired as the head coach of the Golden State Warriors after the release of Mark Jackson.
Kerr led the Warriors to NBA championships in 2015, 2017, and 2018. From 2015-2019, the Warriors made a run of qualifying for the NBA Finals five straight years. During the 2015-2016 season, the Warriors broke the league record for wins in a season by going 73-9.
Luc Longley – Assistant Coach For Australian National Team
The best season from Longley came during the 1997-1998 season. He averaged a career-high in points with 11.4, his only season with double-digit points, 5.9 rebounds, and 1.1 blocks per game.
Longley was traded to the Phoenix Suns after 1998 and played two seasons. He eventually retired from the league in 2001 after a stint with the New York Knicks. He then returned to Australia.
Since his retirement, Longley has stayed around the game. He became a part-owner of the Perth Wildcats. In 2013, he joined the Australian National Team as an assistant coach, a title he serves to this day. He was inducted into the Australian Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006 and the Sport Australia Hall of Fame in 2009.
Ron Harper – Full Time Father
Harper enjoyed success with the Bulls from 1993-1999. In the 1997-1998 season, Harper started all 82 games for the Bulls, scoring a Bulls career-high 9.3 points per game.
After leaving the league, Harper was an assistant coach for the Detroit Pistons in 2005 and was with the team until 2007. His deal ran out after that year and was not renewed. He has not coached in the league since.
He has stayed around the game of basketball though. His son, Ron Harper Jr., played college basketball for Rutgers University in the Big Ten Conference. Thanks to his son’s efforts, who finished All-Big Ten Conference, Rutgers broke a long NCAA tourney drought. Harper Sr. was at every game.
Toni Kukoc – Special Advisor To Chicago Bulls
Kukoc was an international star that turned into a pivotal player for the Bulls. Kukoc’s best two seasons came after Michael Jordan retired, averaging 18.8 points per game, but even when the GOAT was around, he was a pivotal scorer.
Kukoc averaged 13.1 points in 1996, 13.2 points in 1997, and 13.3 points in 1998. At the end of 1996, Kukoc shot close to 50% from the field.
After a successful NBA and international career, Kukoc joined the Bulls in 2015 as a special advisor. This year, Kukoc was selected to the 2021 Hall of Fame class. Kukoc waited seven long years for this moment.
Dennis Rodman – Lives In Michigan
Rodman was one of the greatest rebounders Chicago had seen during his three-year tenure. Rodman led the league in rebounding in each of his three seasons with averages of 14.9, 16.1, and 15.0. Nobody did more dirty work than Rodman.
Since Rodman has left the league, he has battled legal issues, faced addiction, and even met Kim Jong-un in Korea. However, details in his latest endeavors have been kept on the down-low.
All we know about his recent livelihood is that he lives in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. It appears that Rodman, one of the best rebounders we have ever seen, has finally settled down.
Scottie Pippen – Commentator For ESPN’s The Jump
Pippen could have been a superstar on his team but was the best No. 2 option sports has ever seen. Pippen averaged 17.5 points per game in his playoffs career, which included stints with Houston and Portland. When the Bulls won their last three championships, Pippen averaged 16.9 points and 8.5 rebounds, 18.3 points, and 6.8 rebounds, and 16.8 points and 7.1 rebounds per game.
Pippen has hung around the game for a long time since leaving the Bulls. He served as the Chicago Bulls’ public relations ambassador but had a messy divorce from the role in April 2020. According to Pippen, the Bulls couldn’t come to an agreement on compensation that allowed him to keep making his regular TV appearances for ESPN.
At the time, the Bulls were losing and Pippen publicly stated, “I like to associate myself with winning.” Pippen continues to make appearances for The Jump as an analyst.
Michael Jordan – Owner Of Charlotte Hornets
Jordan finished his Bulls career as the all-time leader in points, rebounds, assists, and steals, By the time his career was over, he averaged 33.4 points per game in the playoffs. The only time he averaged less than 30 points in the playoffs was his rookie season, in which he averaged 29.3 points per game.
The six-time Finals MVP left the league for good after 2003 and then bought a minority stake in the Charlotte Bobcats (now known as Hornets) in 2006. As part of the deal, Jordan took full control over the basketball side of the operation with the title Managing Member of Basketball Operations.
In February 2010, it was reported that Jordan sought majority ownership of the Bobcats and one month later the purchase was completed. During Jordan’s tenure, the Hornets have not succeeded like his days of playing with the Bulls. In 2019, Jordan sold a minority piece of the Hornets to Gabe Plotkin and Daniel Sundheim, but retained the majority of the team to himself, including the role of chairman.