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Bulls Rumors: CHI Granted Permission to Interview 76ers' Ime Udoka, More

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistSeptember 1, 2020

Philadelphia 76ers' Ben Simmons, left, listens to assistant coach Ime Udoka, right, during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Sacramento Kings, Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2019, in Philadelphia. The 76ers won 97-91. (AP Photo/Chris Szagola)
Chris Szagola/Associated Press

The Chicago Bulls will reportedly interview a long list of candidates for their head coaching vacancy after firing Jim Boylen.

Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported the Eastern Conference team was given permission to interview plenty of assistant coaches, including those who are still on staffs in the playoffs. The Milwaukee Bucks' Darvin Ham, Denver Nuggets' Wes Unseld Jr. and Miami Heat's Dan Craig were among those the Bulls were granted permission to speak to about the job.

Elsewhere, they were allowed to speak with Dallas Mavericks assistants Jamahl Mosley and Stephen Silas, Philadelphia 76ers' Ime Udoka and Minnesota Timberwolves associate head coach David Vanterpool. The team will also speak to former Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson.

Atkinson and Udoka both stand out on that list.

Udoka was an assistant coach for the 76ers this season and has a notable pedigree given he spent seven seasons on the staff of all-time great Gregg Popovich on the San Antonio Spurs. He understands what it takes to build a winning culture from his time with the Spurs and could translate that to Chicago.

As for Atkinson, he was in his fourth season as the head coach of the Nets when they fired him in March.

He went just 20-62 in his first season and 28-54 in his second but led Brooklyn to the postseason in his third. He also had the team in playoff position before he was fired this season despite being without Kevin Durant throughout and Kyrie Irving for extended stretches.

Whoever takes over for the Bulls will be in charge of a team with a potentially bright future even though it hasn't won a playoff series since the 2014-15 campaign.

Zach LaVine, Lauri Markkanen, Coby White and Wendell Carter Jr. represent a solid and talented young core, and Chicago has the No. 4 overall pick in the upcoming 2020 NBA draft. Boylen was unable to figure it out with this group, but the Bulls are doing their due diligence as they attempt to find someone who can in the future.

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