The decision to fire head coach Vinny Del Negro has already been made, according to sources with knowledge of the Chicago Bulls' thinking. The fact that the Bulls' front office has not been able to settle on a replacement is the main thing keeping the embattled Del Negro employed, the sources said.
There were discussions recently within the organization about having John Paxson, Chicago's executive vice president of basketball operations, take over the team, but Paxson ultimately decided against it. Then, according to sources, Chicago contacted former Bulls coach Doug Collins, a candidate for the job two years ago when Del Negro was hired, but Collins was not interested in coaching the club.
The Bulls would prefer not to promote an assistant coach, either Bernie Bickerstaff or Pete Myers, to interim status, but if they can't settle on a permanent replacement for Del Negro, they may have to go that route.
A strong run by the Bulls, who beat New Orleans Saturday night after the return of Tyrus Thomas from a broken arm, could delay Del Negro's eventu
Well this is several interesting nuggets all rolled into one article:
1: VDN is gone unless he miraculously proves his worth while management is searching for a replacement.
2: They want a permanent coach in place prior to 2010 FA
3: They aren't promoting an assistant to the permanent spot [but may do the interim thing if a permanent guy can't be found].
5: They can't agree on who that permanent coach should be.
6: It won't be John Paxson.
I hope it's not Doug Collins unless Doug Collins has changed a lot. Throw out his Washington years where he was basically the mouthpiece coach for Michael Jordan, and you're still left with one of the slowest paced, most controlling coaches ever.
Does that seem, even remotely, like what you think the Bulls need? Maybe Collins has mellowed over time, or maybe he'd force the pace with this team. Some coaches are adaptable, and some force players to adapt to their system. To be honest, I don't think either style is incorrect, but I think Collins is in the latter group, and I don't think our players would adapt well to a slow paced micro-managed offense.
It'd be interesting to see what type of effect Collins had on FA though, since he may be quite chummy with a bunch of star players from his broadcasting days. They might envision him being a good guy to play for whether that's actually true or not.
We'll see if anything comes out of this, but I'm personally hoping Doug stays in the booth.