Toni Kukoc returns to Bulls as special advisor to owner

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Scottie Pippen as been a special advisor to President & COO Michael Reinsdorf for three years.

Now he has a new running mate in one of his old running mates — Toni Kukoc. The Bulls made the announcement this week.

“You only have to be around Toni for a few minutes to appreciate his personality, passion, and professionalism and recognize the contributions he will make to our team in his new role,” Reinsdorf said in a released statement. “Toni will work across the organization and his duties will be wide-ranging. He will bring valuable perspective that comes with experience to many areas, whether it is relating to the international players on our team or sharing what it means to be a Chicago Bull when talking to partners and fans. Toni will be a strong representative of both the team’s legacy and its future.”

“It is a thrill and an honor to again be a part of the team that helped define my basketball career here in the United States and in Chicago,” Kukoc said in his statement. “The Bulls have become my extended family, and I am really looking forward to the future and being a Bull for life.”

Kukoc was the sixth man for the Bulls second back-to-back-to-back title run from 1996-98 (he won Sixth Man of the Year in 1996). He’s a Bulls legend.

The only interesting thing here is that when Pippen and Kukoc were teammates there was a lot of tension between them. Kukoc was then GM Jerry Krause’s golden boy, and that led to issues between Kukoc and the locker room power structure of Michael Jordan and Pippen. Kukoc was considered Jordan’s whipping boy.

Going on 20 years later, you would think everyone is mature enough to have moved past all that.