How long would it take you to embrace LeBron?

I was thinking today that for a title to feel special, you need to really embrace the team.  Just having the uniform on the front is not enough.   Not for me, and probably not for most die hard Bulls fans.

If the Lakers had decided to trade their roster for ours at the trade deadline, I'd follow the team, and I'd be happy they won a title (if they won), but it wouldn't feel all that special.   The talent wouldn't feel like it's ours.

In that vein, LeBron wouldn't feel like he's ours either.   Now I'm not jumping the gun and assuming he's coming here.   Despite today's joyful report from Chris Broussard, I find the odds of LeBron picking the Bulls to be around 25-30%, but playing make believe (and I have two kids, so I'm well practiced in make believe); if he joined the team, how long would it take you to embrace him?  

While I'd be absolutely bouncing off the walls happy if we signed LeBron, and know I'd embrace him as a Bull eventually, I also know it wouldn't be right away. 

There's still so much LeBron hatred left over from the time's he's beat the crap out of us and danced on the court afterwards.   All the goofy rituals, hand shakes, team building, and giddiness of pounding the crap out of us just builds up some negativity.

It got me to thinking, who else causes this reaction?   Kobe Bryant popped into my mind immediately, and after that, I'm not sure if anyone else is on the list.   Dwyane Wade is a maybe for me since he's ripped our heart out a few times too, but at least we swept his ass out of the playoffs once as well.

I thought it might have to do with the total talent, but I thought about it more, and I think it has more to do with the guys who would take over a similar role to what Derrick Rose has.  Add Dwight Howard or Chris Bosh and they complement Rose and play a two man game.   Add LeBron, and he's taking the ball out of Rose's hands (not that I'm complaining, the coaching staff will find a way to make it work).

Derrick Rose is unequivocally our guy.  He's a Chicago Bull through and through.  There's a part of me that would do anything for Rose to win a title here as the best player even though I don't think he's talented enough to pull that off.   Rose becomes the best player in the league in my perfect dream world situation and leads us to titles as the man.  

However, left between wishing on a star for Rose to become #1 or getting LeBron and having probably 10x the odds of winning a title, give me LeBron and let me work out my emotional issues through therapy.


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  • I couldn't embrace LBJ, until he actually EARNED the nickname KING James in a Bulls' uniform.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    For what it's worth, I still would rather have DWADE or MELO, along with BOSH.

    In all seriousness, who would beat a team with this starting 5?

    PG - Rose, SG - Wade, SF - Deng, PF - Bosh, C - Noah

    No one in a 7-game series!!!

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    From day one. I think LeBron is a jerk, but who cares, MJ was a jerk too. So long as he's our jerk then all is instantly forgiven. You talk about wanting to win a title with Rose, but come on, what greater compliment to Rose is there than the best player in the game wanting to come play with him?

    I mean winning a title under the "Piston's model" with Hinrich/Gordon/Deng would have been cool too, but the day we got Rose we knew that was history. Same thing happens if we get LeBron, nice knowing you build around Rose plan, it's LeBron's team now.

  • In reply to MrHappy:


    Doug Collins would ACCEPT the Head Coaching job for the Chicago Bulls, if offered it.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    Where's Doug?

    There is Head Coaching news all over the place. ZZZZZZZZZZZ.

    WAKE UP, man...haha!!!

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    It would probably take me until "L"

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    I think maybe the first year of winning will not be so cool and homely for some people. But by the second year, it will be fine.
    This is capitalism at its best to go where the money is, success is.
    For me, it will be the second LeBron signs on the Bulls contract.
    If you start thinking like that, MJ is not a true Chicago guy. He is basically a NC guy from childhood and even now. Kobe is a Philadelphia guy. If you think the person should grow with the team...then you need to have the same coach also for it to feel that way.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    MJ and Kobe are different. The started their careers with their teams, built their reputation with that team and develop strong long-term relationships with the city and it's fans. Even though LeBrons from nearby Akron, the same can be said for him (so far). What he does next, we'll see. Not many people get to play for their hometown. LBJ, Rose and Wilt Chamberlain (played for the Philadelphia Warriors / 76ers) come to mind.

  • In reply to jamatokwu:

    What I mean is this hometown concept is outdated. Even if MJ started and built his reputation with the Bulls, he doesn't even live here anymore. After 20 years, all people will remember is who won and where they won. If LeBron wins 5 championships with Rose, he will go into the HOF as a Bull and he will be marketed all over the world as a Bull. This is just a homely feeling for a small group of connected people or some people who have those thoughts. The vast majority of people will celebrate him as a Bull.

  • In reply to jamatokwu:

    How soon does the ink on contracts dry?

  • In reply to jamatokwu:

    All Hail the King..!?

    If LeBron really has been telling management who to trade for, what "system" he feels comfortable in/dictates some coaching, or wouldn't it be nice to build/have the team's training facility near where I live..?

    If any and/or all of these things are true that's an unhealthy situation. No person player or otherwise is smart enough to be tbe the G.M., the coach, the building planner etc. It seems his sheer, unadulterated talent has made dollar signs turn LeBron literally into the King/a tyrant.

    People that make comments like, "I don't care if so and so is the spawn of the devil if he can score 30 ppg he's hired" or "If it takes him dictating the coach and player personnel he wants, whatever he wants he can have so long as we get the rings."

    These kind of sentiments are foolish and contradictory. Michael Jordan as great as he was did not want Charles Oakley traded for some old dude from N.Y. named Bill Cartwright. Kobe did eventually succeed in ousting Shaq, but look where that got him. Probably several rings short of where he could/would be now.

    If LeBron wanted to come provided he likes the coach we hire, a name guy who's been to the finals/has a winning past such as Jeff van Gundy. Fine. No problem. But that's only if the Bulls already like that coach/think he would be a good hire. If they knew things we don't(such as Joakim is not a bust) about Jeff that would make him no longer viable as a good coach/good for the team, and they hired him anyway, this is the type of artifical, coddling, unhealthy move that spells karma and performance disaster.

    So if LeBron and the Bulls happen to both like the same guy or are down to two guys the Bulls like, and they go with the one LeBron favors then I have no probelm with that. But if they go for a coach or players they flat out don't like just to please/appease LeBron no good will come of it.

    And I really think if LeBron does/did have a friend in this world and not someone who just wanted to use him for his basketball talents and/or money, they'd quit enabling him to be a spoiled, over appeased guy who in the end is not respected but simply paid off. And Lebron as a person would be much the better for it.

    So if we can agree on a coach we like fine. Players we will take input on what he thinks would help his game/compliment him, but we will decide what players to bring in as it should be. He can not in any way shape or form pick the right players for this ball club over G.M.'s who do build/help build championships(Jerry Krause not withstanding).

    And Jerry, since I mentioned him, while he may have brought about the Bulls demise, he also for years made the right moves with Grant, Pippen, Rodman, Kukoc, Harper and on and on. And I don't want to hear this crap about how he could have won with any number of guys. It was these guys who had a passion for winning, and you don't find that in a lot fo guys. not on a championship level. Even if Jordan had input it was Krause/management/coaches who made these decisions. Not Michael.

    If you want the guy to come to the Bulls, shouldn't you damn well care about him? At least a little.

  • In reply to jamatokwu:

    Well Id probably say im a fanatic and I would embrace him right when he signs the dotted line. The guy is the BEST in the game...the MVP of the league... and he is doing things that are UNHEARD of for his age. Why wouldnt you take him in right away!? Ya it will be different, but your deffinetly going to be cheering for the guy right when he makes his first point in a Bulls uniform. Your not going to think about him dancing on the Cleveland sidelines...who cares about that anyway. If the Bulls want LeBron to come to Chicago...everybody from day 1 needs to jump on board.

    For the people who say they rather have 2 superstars then LeBron....Well how are you going to do that?!?!?! If LeBron chose to came here....thats a micracle in itself. If you want to talk about getting 2 superstars...why dont you talk about signing LeBron and then trading Deng and Noah for Bosh or something. Fact is...if LeBron comes here, the Bulls are instant title contenders for the next 6-7 years imo. If we dont get him...we need Bosh or Amare.

  • In reply to jamatokwu:

    This whole coaching search is planned too...if LeBron loses have to think the Bulls will be talking to Calipari about the job. If the LeBron wins the series...the Bulls will be looking at Doc Rivers for the possible job. All these Lawrence Frank and other losers arnt even going to come close to this job. Kevin Mchale YA right lol If that were the case the Bulls would of just kept Del Negro. Imo the coach will either be Doc Rivers, Byron Scott, Mo Cheeks or Calipari.

  • In reply to jamatokwu:

    How about when Shaq went to LA....You better believe they fell in love with him the minute he went there. And what happened once he got there....they won 3 or 4 titles or whatever is was. It would be no different here with LeBron.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    I'd probably come around at some point, but this is my biggest problem with acquiring LBJ. I'd rather see him stay in Cleveland and lose.

    Which is why I prefer Wade. He's homegrown. He went to high school with my sister. It's easy to think he's ours.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    Doug, question for you in terms of the "fit" with Rose and Wade, or Rose and LBJ.

    Since everything always comes back to Jordan... what would you have thought about the fit between Pippen and Jordan (in 1987). On paper, were they really complimentary players? Pippen handled the ball a lot, maybe even more than Jordan. Neither were great jump shooters. Both were attackers.

    Is the fit with Rose/Wade all that different than the fit with Pippen/Jordan?

  • In reply to KenyattaWright:

    It's not a perfect parallel but that's a very compelling argument. The counter I guess is that Rose and Wade aren't as good as Pippen and Jordan.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    It would take me a while to embrace Lebron. He would need to cut out all of the BS he does. Absolutely NO tossing powder in the beginning of games. None! never would want to see that in the UC. Also, no dancing. No gooseeye 3 point gestures, no bouncing around the walls in the tunnel. That is what is killing the NBA. I want him to be about business, be serious about being one of the greatest ever. Chicago isn't the type of city that embraces Lebrons antics.

    Even if he changes his ways he will still be my 3rd favorite Bull behind Rose & Noah because those guys get it.

  • In reply to Dileg:

    John Lithgow played the role of RobD in the movie footloose. Little known fact.

  • In reply to Davidmon5:

    Kevin Bacon played Lebron...who just wants to dance! Why won't you let him dance?

    Do you think Lebron would be a bad influence on Noah? Joakim improved so much when he straightened out a bit, got his priorities right, and acquired a Chicago blue-collar work ethic. Does adding Lebron to the mix turn this team into Impressionable Young Billionaires Gone Wild? Does being too talented to have to work and too rich not to party hurt the chances of a championship every time the playoff grind roles around? Or does Derrick's mom keep them all in line?

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    I think it could develop during the course of the first season but it will be an adjustment period. You have to go through some emotional experiences with a player. Overcome adversity. Demonstrate that he will do whatever it takes for the team to win. That's what we're used to. He would have to alter his attitude, however. Chicago LOVES it's sports heroes (any heroes to be honest). We worship them because we want to not because we should or are supposed to. So he would need to leave his antics in Cleveland. Come in humble and authentic and simply play his heart out and we'll love him for it.

    And he can't be a loaner. The three-year deal with a fourth option would be a slap in the face. The way he's stringing along the Cavs organization and the City of Cleveland is disgusting and shouldn't be allowed to get away with that in Chicago. Either you want to be here for the long haul or keep it moving. If we are to get emotionally invested, he needs to also.

    It will be tough for him (at least with REAL Bulls fans) because at the end of the day Rose is our homeboy through and through. He's the hometown kid that is making it and returning the city to the basketball elite. After a slow and rough start, Joakim earned his spot in our hearts and took up permanent residence during the Bulls-Celtics playoff series. What will LBJ do to earn a spot in our hearts? We'll see if he takes the opportunity.

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    The Bulls plan to start the interview process next week. Cheeks and Frank are said to be the front-runners with McHale and Casey in the running.

  • Now that question could make an interesting post to debate.

    Essentially, Lebron vs anyboby or everybody else.

    I am certain that if we did a Jordan vs everbody else, virtually everybody would take Jordan.

    While Wade Bosh is awfully tempting, even moreso for you because you like Deng, I would have a very hard time passing on Lebron.

    I think that having Lebron for the long term gives you the best chance to win the most titles.

    With Rose, Lebron and Noah as your core you will always be able to add guys to compliment that core.

    With Lebron, you have to trade Deng, I have to believe that it doesn't become a salary dump and you find a way to get some value back so it ends up being Lebron and somebody else vs Wade and Bosh. Plus, if you "just" get Lebron the Bulls would still have an additional $5 million or so to pick up another guy, Anthony Morrow, maybe.

    I know you've pooh-poohed this proposal, but for the sake of argument lets say we could make a Deng for Kevin Love deal work by bribing Minny.

    Which team do you like better then

    Rose, Morrow?, Lebron, Love and Noah,
    Rose, Wade, Deng, Bosh and Noah.

    Morrow and Love might not be as sexy, but they might be great fits with Rose, Lebron and Noah.

    Previously, You have argued against Wade because he is a horrible fit with Rose, I don't think that the Rose/Wade dynamic changes by adding Bosh to the equation. In fact you add a third guy who demands the ball, and you still have no 3 point shooter.

    In theory you would go for 2 superstars over 1, unless the 1 is a transcendant player, like Jordan. Not sure that Bosh is really a superstar. Is Lebron transcendant, until game 5 everybody sure thought that he was.

  • You are correct, but the Bulls would never have won 70 games without Rodman, and they would not have had the second 3 peat either.

    Oddly enough, he was the perfect fit for that team at that time.

  • I do find the Bulls lack of interst in Collins if true quite interesting.

    He is absolutely one of the best candidates, if available, so the Bulls lack of interest is not only interesting, it is just plain stupid.

  • Lebron would be embraced immediately.

    Certainly, by the time the playoffs rolled around he would be our guy. And if we won the championship the first year he would own the town.

    You are right, it might not feel as personal or special as the first Jordan title because we lived and died with that team for a period of years, you cannot replace that experience. The 85 Bears were special for a million reasons, but they also took several years to build up to that season, and they were our guys.

    On the other hand, Andre Dawson became immediately beloved in his first season and the Cubs finished last so I don't think it will take very long for Lebron to become ours.

  • Bigway +5 i totally agree....Like i said with Shaq...LA immediately loved him and at that time he was one of the best in the game...Chicago will embrace LeBron ASAP...i wouldnt mind the whole smacking the powder before the game either...thats who he is, thats what he does. I probably wouldnt let him dance on the sidelines though....Im not really a fan of that.

    The real question would be...Would Reinsdorf let LeBron wear a headband in Chicago!?!?!? He better imo lol

  • I don't know why you're blowing off the Doug Collins news. It was apallingly stupid not to hire him the first time. This is a chance to correct that blunder. Doug is the right coach for this team. He loves Rose, the first time he saw him live was while analyzing the breakout Game 1 in Boston. He's respected enough to get the players to work hard and discipline them. He's a brilliant basketball tactician. He's fiercely defensive of his players and wouldn't tolerate some of the outrageous no-calls on Rose. While Charles-In-Charge was admittedly weak in strategy, he was lauded as a great "player development" coach (though he refused to play rookies or deep into his bench). Well it would have been a hell of a lot better for Rose's development to actually learn an NBA offense (you know, like...PLAYS and stuff) and to be held accountable on defense. The Celtics and Bulls were so incredibly evenly matched that any small change could have tipped it in favor of one team or the other. Game 7 was already over when Vinny revealed his game plan during the pregame interview..."Get Ben going." Even casual Bulls fans were groaning as they knew from years of watching the live-and-die-by-the-jumpshot Bulls that they only stood a chance if they drove the ball and got into the paint, freeing the shooters (As Collins would later point out in the keys to the game). Depending on 48 minutes of Ben Gordon jumpshots is not a strategy. Plays called after timeouts...pass the ball to Ben and let him jack up a triple-teamed off-balance three.
    Doug Collins would have won the Bulls that series. This summer is a chance for Jerry to rectify that god-awful hiring by butting the hell out of operational decisions and letting Paxson hire a respectable coach that any FA will play for.
    I hope to God the Bulls are just waiting to see if there's anything to this Calipari-brings-Lebron stuff, with Collins on speed dial if it's BS.

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