NBA Twitter was on a warpath when the internet caught Minnesota Timberwolves guard, Malik Beasley, on a date with 46-year-old Larsa Pippen, the wife of former Chicago Bulls All-Star Scottie Pippen. This is the type of off-season spectacle that content starving fans just eat up. Giving attention and traction to a story that would have been more or less drowned out during the regular season.

Beasley in the Spotlight

It’s easy to see why NBA Twitter would be mesmerized by all this. Malik Beasley, 24 years-old, just put ink to paper on a newly signed 4-year, $60 million dollar contract. However, that contract isn’t the only major news that was shared about Beasley’s life. The 6’4 guard has also made headlines this offseason by being charged in a Minneapolis court with threats of violence and drug possession after he pulled a hunting rifle out on a couple of house shoppers in his neighborhood. Who says you can’t get media exposure in a market like market Minnesota!

While everyone is enamored about this modern-day NBA version of the Graduate, complete with a main character who has had more offseason stories published about himself than Zion Williamson, what gets lost, or I guess who gets lost in all this is, the 20-year-old guard playing for Vanderbilt, Scottie Pippen Jr.

He Just Wants to Play Basketball

Scotty Pippen Jr. layup against kentucky
Like most sons of former NBA players, Scotty Pippen Jr. attended Sierra Canyon High School.

I didn’t want to comment on the relationship between Malik Beasley and Larsa Pippen, but instead, I wanted to talk about a young man fighting his way out of two gigantic shadows. Scotty Pippen Jr. looked to build on his impressive freshman season at Vanderbilt, where he was selected as part of the SEC ALL-Freshman. Some of the names on the list include 2020 number one pick Anthony Edwards and the twenty-first pick Tyrese Maxey. Scotty started his sophomore season with a career-high 25 points, 4 assist, and 3 steals in a  78-71 win over Valparaiso.

In just a few short days, Scotty would go on an emotional rollercoaster from experiencing his most memorable college basketball moment to then getting bullied and ridiculed on the internet for something he had no part in. It’s bad enough he inadvertently has to chase the basketball ghost that is his dad. Being named “Scotty Pippen Jr.” comes with pressure and weight on its own. He has a constant target on his back from opposing fans because he shares the same name as said Hall of Fame father. This isn’t a foreign concept though. Many sons and daughters of former great athletes get compared to their parents. Often times, their achievements are handcuffed to the achievements of their parents. Sadly, there will always be those who feel that Scotty was given a basketball opportunity because of the name he shares, not because of his own work and talent.

No Privacy in 2020

Scotty Pippen Jrs. likes
Younger athletes tend to read about themselves than older athletes.

Scotty is just a young man trying to play basketball. However, he is always getting dragged on the internet because of who his parents are. The picture above is some of the Tweets that Scotty Jr. has liked. Scotty Pippen Jr., instead of receiving praise for his performance, was the subject of numerous jokes and insults on the internet. The web can be an unforgiving place and I just wanted to take time to profile him for his basketball talent, instead of his parents.

COVID has made it so that the NCAA is playing games in empty arenas but could you imagine the type of ridicule he would have received from opposing students? I hurl my fair share of idiotic jokes and insults on the internet, but the attacks on Scotty Jr. are uncalled for. I say leave the kid alone and let him play basketball. If you want to make jokes, make it about Malik Beasley not knowing how to spell “conference” instead.

At least Malik Beasley is honest about himself.

I hope you enjoyed this article and took something from it! When you have some time, go give my podcast “The Benchwarmers and Burners” some love! You can follow the show’s Twitter and if you want to check out other great content, go follow Belly Ups Hoops and Belly Up Podcast. I promise you won’t regret it!

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About Author

Josh Lozano

Nice to meet you! My name is Josh Lozano, I'm a journalist/radio host based out of Vegas. I graduated from the University of Nevada Las Vegas with a B.A. in Journalism and Media Studies. The only thing I love more than sports is sports betting! I dabble in all forms of athletics, but my bread and butter consistent of handicapping the NBA (YTD: 62% - 34/54 free picks on Twitter for 2019-2020 season). I've been covering sports professionally since 2015 where I wrote articles for different local newspapers. I got my start in radio working with Louisiana broadcasting legend, Tim Fletcher at 1130 AM the Tiger. I've interned at Vegas Stats & Information Network, a sports betting oriented live radio and television broadcast located inside Southpoint Casino. I currently host a Sunday morning on KUNV HD2 show covering all sports nationally and regularly give out free sport betting picks.

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