Bulls honor Scottie Pippen

CHICAGO -- The Chicago Bulls unveiled a bronze bust of Hall of Famer Scottie Pippen during halftime of the Bulls' 97-81 win over the Boston Celtics on Thursday night.

The bust, which was created by local sculptors Omri and Julie Rotblatt-Amrany, truly touched the Bulls great. With his family in tow, Pippen stood in awe of the bust and then made a short speech to the soldout crowd of more than 23,000.

"It truly ranks among the top," he said after the ceremony, framing the honor in terms of accomplishments in his career. "I spent my career, my heart, my life, and the blood, the tears that I shedded for this organization and for this team. This is truly where my heart is and this here truly ranks among all the accolades that I've ever achieved. As an individual, I've never tried to go out and do anything outside of the team. This is truly an honor, a gift, I was not expecting."

The Pippen bust will be placed in the 100 level at the United Center.

"You never think about these [things] as a player," he said. "Even after my career is over, this never comes into mind. This is something that is truly done from the hearts and souls from the organization. I'm just honored that I was able to receive such an accolade. ... It's great. You just want to be remembered as a player. And hopefully you've given something to the game; probably not as much as the game has given me, but it's given me an opportunity to leave my legacy in a place where I call home."

Both current and former Bulls personnel were happy to see Pippen receive such an honor.

"The guy's an unbelievable guy," Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said after the team's Thursday morning shootaround. "His career speaks for itself. Of course, the six championships ... I'm just thrilled for him. He's been a great asset for our team."

Pippen, who serves as an ambassador for the organization, is hoping the Bulls can end the year with another championship.

"The team is truly playing good basketball and it's getting [to be] that time of the season," he said. "The fans, the organization, is getting really hungry for another championship. The regular season, you can really throw it out of the window, everyone wants to see what it's really about during the postseason. We're excited about our team this season. They've been playing some extremely good basketball. They've competed and shown that they're as good as any team in the league. We're looking forward to a great postseason."

Nick Friedell covers the Bulls for ESPNChicago.com and ESPN 1000.