Dwyane Wade Out of Touch with Comments about Chicago Bulls' Loyalty
In case you missed it in today's Chicago Tribune, just turn on the radio—it's the news of the day.
The homecoming parade that was being planned for mid-July has been called off, and not because of a cost-cutting move by the city.
Dwyane Wade in today's Tribune questioned the Chicago Bulls' loyalty to their former players.
"I think the biggest question that you think about has to be loyalty. I know one thing about Miami: It is a very loyal organization. I see what they do with their players when their players get done with the game of basketball...how loyal they are. I don't know about the Bulls," said Wade in the Tribune.
Wade made sure to point out Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen, who both have their numbers hanging in the rafters.
"I see Michael Jordan is not there, Scottie Pippen is not there...you know, these guys are not a part (of the current team)...things like that. So that is probably one of the biggest things for me, because I am a very loyal person," said Wade.
My response to Wade is to open your eyes.
So Jordan isn't there right now, but until he spent all those millions to take full control of the Bobcats, he spent more time at the UC than he did in Charlotte.
I was at several Bulls or Hawks games that he attended. When he retired the first time, owner Jerry Reinsdorf paid him his full basketball contract while he was playing minor league baseball for the White Sox, Jerry's other team.
Jordan wanted to be an owner immediately after he retired in '98, and no one on the Bulls was selling so he moved to the Wizards. After that failed he finally ended up in Charlotte.
Pippen isn't a major part of the organization, but he is around.
He writes a monthly article about his thoughts on the team and the league on the Bulls Web site. He also threw his hat into the coaching search two years ago when Vinny Del Negro got hired, but outside of playing Pip has no coaching experience. He has never been an assistant or held any position in the front office.
I guess if Wade wants to nit pick at those two he might have a case, but what about everyone else?
The late great Johnny "Red" Kerr was the team's first coach and was a longtime broadcaster.
Jerry Sloan, who has his number retired, worked his way up as a scout before becoming the head coach. His coaching tenure lasted less than three seasons.
The late Norm Van Lier was connected to the team in many ways, mostly through the broadcasting side.
Bob Love, who also has his number hanging from the rafters, can be seen at almost every single Bulls game and helps out greatly with all the Bulls charities.
How about the Jordan Era Bulls?
Randy Brown and Pete Myers are currently on the coaching staff. On the broadcasting side, Stacy King is on TV, Kendall Gill is doing game analysis, and Bill Wennington is on the radio.
Bill Cartwright was the head coach for some time, BJ Armstrong held a spot in the front office before he left to become Derrick Rose's agent, and current Vice President John Paxson has been an assistant coach, radio broadcaster, and general manager.
No one liked how the team was broken up after the '98 championship, but the Bulls helped a lot of their former players then. They signed guys like Steve Kerr and Luc Longley to bigger contracts than they could have received on the open market and then traded them to contending teams.
Wade says he knows the Heat are loyal. How was Pat Riley being loyal to coach Stan Van Gundy when he pushed him out so he could become head coach?
Another interesting thing that came out during the interview was that Wade plans on talking and hopefully meeting with fellow free agents LeBron James and Joe Johnson.
Is all this loyalty talk just part of a sales pitch by Wade to convince other star players to think Miami before they think Chicago?
By the way, just a little side note to all this loyalty talk: Larry Bird and Kevin McHale were both Celtic greats, but neither are employed by the Celtics. There are examples of this all across the league.
So next time Dwyane, think before you speak. (By the way, I expect you to announce on Twitter shortly how this quote has totally been taken out of context.)
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