The conclusion of the Last Dance leaves you with a notion that they could have gone for the 4-peat and possibly won. We looked at this and concluded they would not have done it for 3 simple reasons.
- Scotty was done with the Bulls. After signing a below value contract and playing out his contract, Scotty was looking to get paid. One more year at a discount was off the books. Pippen took the first contract for 'security' and he wasn't going to sign another short-term deal with none. Sorry, but the team's second best (maybe third if you consider Kukoc's play at the time) player was gone.
- Jerry Krause! I hate to say it, but this guy actually had some pretty nice moves. However, why the hell would you start the season by saying he was going to do a rebuild immediately after the season? This guy's ego was so fragile and he was going to do what he wanted, damned the rest of the organization. And for whatever reason, the other Jerry was going along with it. Or maybe Krause was the puppet and Big Jerr was the puppeteer. Regardless, this genius organization sunk the 4-peat even before the 3-peat was done.
- Michael Jordan was Spent. In the 20+ years since the last Bulls championship, memories have probably faded and thoughts that Michael, Scotty, Rodman, etc had enough in the tank for one more run. But if you recall the end of the 'Last Dance' you could see how physically and mentally tired Jordan was. Not to mention Rodman's waning interests and as mentioned before, Scotty's all but certain departure. But the largest impact of all was that Jordan was clearly spent and that the thought of him enduring another year, seems all but impossible.
It was a great ride for sure, but the 4-peat was not in the books. Thanks to the 'Last Dance' for stirring up the memories and spurring some great debates.