Top 5 favorite and most hated post dynasty Bulls

So I was thinking about all the great and terrible moments post dynasty and being a man, that means lists were formed.   I had my top moments post earlier, but I was thinking of my top five favorite and bottom five Bulls post dynasty.   Given that the love for a player can rise and fall like the tide, I'm going to use my peak and valley feelings about a player to make the list.  
Top 5 Favorites:

#5) Tyson Chandler - It was a toss up between Kirk Hinrich and Tyson Chandler, but I went Tyson, because in the 04/05 season he seemed to make every clutch defensive play, and it felt like he might finally live up to all that potential and go on to be a young, taller, Ben Wallace.   Hinrich has always been a player I've steadily liked except perhaps the 07/08 season, but Chandler had the brighter peak of the two.

#4) Andres Nocioni - It's easy to forget how promising Nocioni felt as a player in his first two seasons.  He exploded in the first game of the 2004/5 playoffs when Deng and Curry were out, and he carried the team into the 2005/6 playoffs through sheer will power when we won 13 of 14 (12 of 14?) games to close the season and finish .500.   His exit interviews after he was traded to Sacramento made me want to cry.   The guy seemed so genuinely sad to be leaving rather than most players who have the straight "it's a business give me my money" mentality.

#3) Derrick Rose - I suspect Derrick Rose will move up to the #1 slot for me within a year or two, and that most of you will ream me out for not having him there now.  He's certainly my favorite player on the team at this exact moment, but my feelings about this team aren't at their highest peak yet.  He has the highest ceiling of any player the Bulls have had since they dynasty, and the mere hope he brings for the future is enough to love the guy.

#2)  Ben Gordon - Between all the big shots in 2004/05, his great play in 06/07, and his huge run in the playoffs last year, Ben Gordon has provided me with so many great memories.   I've never gotten the chance to interview Ben, but I've always heard he's quiet and egotistical behind the scenes, yet works harder on his game than anyone else on the team.   Even though he left, he's one Bull whom I really have no bad memories of, and outside of Derrick Rose, may be the only one I can say that about.

#1) Luol Deng - He's certainly not my favorite Bull at this exact moment in time.  I've discussed his contract being so far above his value on this blog before and his recent injury history hasn't been pretty.   However, I interviewed Deng at his peak, and he was such a great guy.  He spent so much time talking to me despite my then nothing status (not that so much has changed there).   He was also an instrumental player in our best seasons, and he was the guy I was rooting so hard to draft.

Top 5 most hated Bulls
#5)  Andres Nocioni - How can a guy make both lists?   By becoming a terrible contract and then constantly complaining to the media about how no one else on the team is sharing the ball or playing team basketball.   Look in the mirror buddy.  Nocioni would commonly play for 26 minutes and hoist up 16 shots while never letting the ball leave his hands.

He'd complain about defensive commitment when he played defense like a six year old girls soccer player, just chasing the ball all over the field regardless of who he's supposed to defend.   The culmination of this was when he left Andrew Iguodala as he was cutting to the basket in order to double team someone beyond the 3 point line without their dribble.   I wanted to smash my TV.

I feel bad for putting Nocoini here, because I choose to remember the good times now, but boy did he piss me off near the end.

#4) Jim Boylan - Okay, he was a coach and not a player.  However, this guy could have made a statement of "I deserve this job because I can develop players" and instead made a statement of "I'm scared of Ben Wallace and will continue to play him 40 minutes a game no matter how badly his back up out plays him because if I don't play him I might lose him mentally forever".

In general I'm pretty lenient on coaches, because I think fans tend to pick on all of their flaws and give no credit to their strengths.   We bitch about rotations no matter what they are, and pin much of the blame on the coach.  He did come into a bad situation, but boy did he find a way to make teh worst of it.   After claiming he'd start everything fresh, he took the Skiles route and just magnified it with his rotations.

Hey Jim, did you notice that you were coaching a lotto bound team, how about developing someone?   I will give him credit for taking a team loaded with talent and helping it along to a record that allowed us to draft Derrick Rose.

#3) Eddie Robinson - I tried to be hopeful about the Robinson signing when it happened.  His contract was ridiculous, but he'd come off a good playoff series with Charlotte, was young, athlete, and had at least a chance to improve.  

It didn't take long for that optimism to go away.  He never seemed to e able to tough out anything, improve, or play well when healthy enough to actually suit up.  He strikes me as a player who clearly only played for the money and not the love of the game.

#2) Larry Hughes - The only thing stopping Larry Hughes from being #1 on the list was the fact that he was only here about a season and wasn't a major factor.   Still, this guy was a complete jackass.   When told of the site "heylarryhughesstoptakingsomanydumbshots.com", his response was "I get paid a lot of money to take those shots".   No Larry, you get paid a lot of money because your contract is guaranteed, and at one point you actually scored efficiently.   Someone thought you'd do it again.   I've heard he was a big time locker room cancer in addition to being a terrible basketball player.

I will give him some credit though, when Hinrich was out at the beginning of the 08/09 season, Larry Hughes actually played solid efficient basketball for a few weeks, maybe a month, and I thought there was a chance he'd reformed.   Then he completely fell off the wagon.

#1) Ben Wallace - It's tempting to put Hughes here, because Wallace actually had at least some good moments with the team.  However, I was ready to trade this guy (and took great flack for it) a month into his first season.   I posted on realgm how the Bulls should move him for Kwame Brown, Chris Mihm and a 1st from the Lakers.   That ultimately may have been a poor decision depending on how much value you place on the 06/07 playoff run, but Wallace has hampered us since then as well.

I place a large a mount of blame on Wallace for destroying the college like mentality of always working hard and taking joy in the game.  His mere presence seemed to deflate the team, and his contract quickly became an albatross that led to Larry Hughes, my second least favorite player on the team.  

To see a player come here for so much money and then do so little while clearly wanting to be anywhere else was predictable and disappointing. 

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  • How about Chris Duhon?

    Granted it wasn't always his fault and Skiles played him waaaay too many minutes, but it was so frustrating to watch him play with Ben Gordon sitting on the bench for extended periods....especially during those stretches where he would go 2-20 over the span of 4 games or so. My hatred of Duhon almost equaled my hatred for Larry Hughes.

  • I like your list except for I would switch Rose and Deng. Deng has done nothing to be placed above Rose and BG. Plus Rose, despite only playing one year symbolizes our only star and potential superstar. When we won the lottery, he gave us hope for the next decade.

    I'd also switch out Deng for Boylan. Deng is developing into very much of what happened to Noc. He had a good career on his first deal and now just throws up bad shots and is injury prone. He is fast developing into one oof the worst contracts in the league and will handy cap the team for the next 4-5 years financially as he will never be worth his money with a declining cap.

  • I'm also really happy that you included TC, I think he is very underrated here and most of my favorite fourth quarter memories came from watching BG and TC dominate the 4th quarters on opposite ends of the floor. It was great to watch TC come up with key blocks and rebounds and BG nail big shots. I wish he learned how to keep his fouls down here and a bit more mentally strong (though skilies didn't need to destroy ALL of his confidnce), I know his loss is minimized by getting Noah but I always felt TC was the better player, he just got about 10 mill too much on his deal.

  • I agree, I don't think he is quite there, to the point that he should solidify that spot. But if he doesn't turn it around and return to form, I will be ready to put him firmly on that list next year. I just don't think Boylan really deserves the heat. He was thrown into a group that was broken apart and was a skilies disciple. If we wanted to go another way, we shouldn't have left the old coach's right hand man in charge.

  • I like Noah more long term too but that is mainly because of his age and rookie deal. In terms of talent, I like TC more now but not by much that Noah couldn't be equal. I don't really see either as being much better than the other long term.

  • BTW, I wanted to ask, any updates on deng's injury? Also has the management's perception of him being untouchable changed at all? Do they still see him as a long term guy here?

  • My only gripe with Tyson Chandler was his horrid 2005-2006 season. That playoff series against Miami, Chandler was absolutely horrendous.

  • In reply to Scoot26:

    His fouling and lack of confidence really killed him here.

  • In reply to Scoot26:

    One thing that I forgot to comment on and could not agree with you more about is that Wallace was a team cancer from the moment that he set foot in Chicago.

    He absolutely destroyed our teams attitude and chemistry. He turned a bunch of over achieving guys working for each other into a group of typical jaded veterans cashing a paycheck.

  • Surprised not to see Elton Brand on anybodies list. He wasn't my favorite, but he was the best player we've had since the dynasty years, and by all accounts a true gentelman.

    I hated BoneHead Boylan from day one, but I'm not including coaches, especially interim ones.

    Wallace would be my least favortie because he essentially cost us Chandler, who I would still like to have despite how frustrating his inability to stay healthy is.

    Curry is number 2 least favorite because I knew he was going to turn into a lazy slob from day one. ERob is hard to list too high because we paid him to go away and he wasn't around long.

    Gordon might make my list at #3, because I hate guys who quit on nearly every play that doesn't invovle him shooting. Also I always thought that he had an enormous ego and standoffish personality.
    He clearly only cares about getting his, and now he did and I'm thrilled that he is gone.

    I used to be neutral to slightly positive on Deng, but one more year like the last 2 and he moves into the #4 least liked slot.

    Marcus Fizer makes it at #5 because I had high hopes for him coming in. He showed some flashes, but just couldn't put it together.

    I don't count Hughes because we only got stuck with him because of Wallace who is already #1.

    Noah might just be my favorite, liked him from the moment that I saw him. He plays the game the way I did or would if I had been 6'10 instead of 5'10, except I actually have good form on my shot.

    Rose is number 2 based on his #1 talent and humble nature.

    I'd have to go with Chandler #3, Nocioni #4

    Tempted to put James Johnson at #5 based only on hope and lack of other great candidates, although I liked what I saw of Jay Williams, can't forget that triple double against Jason Kidd.
    Kind of liked Brad Miller, both times that we had him, even though he plays kind of ugly. Got to like anybody who stands up to Shaq.

    Tyrus Thomas gets my vote as honorable mention on both lists.

  • Would that then mean Tim Floyd would also get out-coached by a cup of pee? .....agreed. :)

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