Chicago Bulls and Tom Thibodeau Agree to 4-Year Contract Extension

Ben Chodos@bchodosCorrespondent IIOctober 1, 2012

CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 28:  Head coach Tom Thibodeau of the Chicago Bulls gives instructions to his team against the Philadelphia 76ers in Game One of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2012 NBA Playoffs at the United Center on April 28, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bulls defeated the 76ers 103-91. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

The Chicago Bulls have ensured that head coach Tom Thibodeau will remain on the sidelines for several more seasons.

The team reported via its Twitter that Thibodeau’s contract has been extended by four years.

Gar Forman announces four-year contract extension for Tom Thibodeau at #Bulls media day

— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) October 1, 2012

K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reported the following elated quote from the Bulls coach.

Thibs on 4-year deal: "I'm thankful to Jerry and Gar and John. I never doubted it would work out. I love being here." #Bulls

— K.C Johnson (@KCJHoop) October 1, 2012

Thibodeau certainly has a reason to be happy, and Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski reports that the coach will be handsomely compensated for his services.

Tom Thibodeau's four-year contract extension with Chicago pays him base of $18M with bonuses that could reach $20M, league source tells Y!

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) October 1, 2012

Thibodeau is heading into his third season as the team’s head coach, and he has had remarkable success in Chicago.

After the Bulls went 41-41 during the 2009-10 season, the team decided to move on from Vinny Del Negro and hire Thibodeau, who had most recently been an assistant for the Boston Celtics.

Thibodeau, 54, brought a renewed commitment of defense to the team and it led to immediate improvement. In his first season at the helm, Chicago ranked second in the NBA in opponents points allowed, and its 62-20 regular season record was unequaled across the league.

Thibodeau was named the Coach of the Year for his efforts, and the team went to the Eastern Conference finals before losing to the Miami Heat in five games.

In a lockout-shortened 2011-12 season, the Bulls tied with the San Antonio Spurs for the best record in the NBA, and allowed the fewest points per game of any team. But an injury to superstar point guard Derrick Rose in the first round of the playoffs led to an early exit for the team against the Philadelphia 76ers.

Despite last year’s postseason disappointment, the success under Thibodeau has been startling. He has made an extraordinary difference to this team, and he certainly deserves this contract extension.