Coaching Search (Part 2): Ending The Jordan Curse in Chicago
Maybe it's Mike's fault. Maybe he lead fans to believe the Chicago Bulls would always be contenders. Maybe he lead them to think that three-peats were normal. That success came with the name. Maybe it's his fault that the Bulls have an immense amount of young players.
Let's be realistic Michael Jordan did everything he could to keep the Chicago Bulls atop the NBA and yes things haven't been the same in the Windy City since his departure.
But the real reason for a demise in the consistency with this team is the uncertainty at the head coach position.
Ever since Phil Jackson left the Bulls have had Tim Floyd, Bill Cartwright, Scott Skiles and Jim Boylan all as either head coaches or interim coaches. Collectively under these five coaches from 199-2008 the Bulls have gone 206-368.
After firing Scott Skiles on Christmas Eve (at least he got to play Santa for his kids) the Bulls didn't retain interim coach Jim Boylan after the end of the regular season.
This leaves the Chicago Bulls with a vacancy at their head coaching position with several different options available to them:
Avery Johnson- Fired as Mavericks head coach after failing to take his team out of the first round of the playoffs for the second straight year and that's just not acceptable to Mark Cuban. He is a fiery coach who gets on his personnel if he doesn't believe they are performing the way they should and this young group of guys may just need that to jump-start their engines. Avery has shown he can coach posting very impressive records during his stint as Dallas' X's and O's guy, 194-70 in his four years.
Mark Jackson- Thought to be destined to New York after Isiah Thomas was booted off the bench by Donnie Walsh. However after several crazy turns of events Mike D'Antoni ended up taking the job from Jackson's grasp. Jackson who's currently a telecaster for ESPN/ABC was a seventeen year veteran in the NBA before throwing in the towel in 2004. A talented point guard during his career he understands the game and has the respect necessary to hold command of a group of young athletes filled with potential.
Dwane Casey- Former Timberwolves coach from 2005-2007 totaling a record of 53-69 getting fired 40 games into the 2006-07 season. Casey began his NBA coaching career as an assistant coach under George Karl in Seattle. If given a longer leash I think Casey can work wonders as a coach and install his concepts and ideas into the current Bulls roster.
Tom Thibodeau- A known defensive minded coach who has helped transform the star studded Celtics into the best defensive team in the league. With eighteen years of experience under Thibodeau's belt his name has been associated with many of the previous head coach openings around the league. Thibodeau signed only a one year contract with the Boston Celtics probably under the premonition that he would have a few offers come his way this off-season.
Michael Curry- Current assistant coach with the Detroit Pistons and has said that he would like to be a head coach in the NBA. An eleven year veteran who already was in a place of high leadership as the president of the NBA players union. Curry works with the Pistons younger players and is a key part to the development of this years bench. Not taking anything for granted is one of the important things Curry instills in his young players and the Chicago Bulls have plenty of.
Whoever the Bulls select as the team's next coach will have to hope that the team is able to re-negotiate the contracts of Luol Deng and Ben Gordon and drafting an impact rookie if there is any hope of there being a quick turnaround in Chicago next year.
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