A mixed bag of thoughts

A mixed bag of thoughts

With all that's happened this season, and since the season ended, now would be a good time to get some closure on things, as well as look ahead to what will be a very different future.

The Bulls under Fred Hoiberg will be more entertaining
Sure, I could beat around the bush, but I believe K.C. when he says this:

And let's be honest, creative scoring is just more aesthetically pleasing than seeing Jimmy Butler rotate off-ball to close off the paint. Close second, but still. Hoiberg is projected to insert some fun offense with lots of wrinkles for wing players and scoring early in the shot clock. Whether it'll translate to winning will of course be a huge domino in terms of how entertaining it is to watch, but at the least there's some eye-candy to look forward to, and I'm not just talking about Freddy.

The 22nd pick should fill a void
With Aaron Brooks presumably gone (not yet written in stone, but someone could throw him Nate money) the Bulls could use a steady back-up point guard, and preferably not just a gunner. Enter Jerian Grant. Now, admittedly, Grant could be off the board at #22, but if he isn't, he'd be the perfect fit. For one, he's tall for the position at 6'4, he's a better passer than Brooks by a fair margin, and he's got defensive potential. I'm a BPA type of guy, but I'm fairly confident in saying that if he's on the board, he'd fall into that category as well.

But should he be off the board, the Bulls could possibly fill in that void at the center position by choosing the somewhat controversial Robert Upshaw. Like everyone else, I have some doubts about his past, but there's no denying the kid got game. Besides, if the alternative is Nazr Mohammed, taking a flyer on Upshaw makes sense.

The national media mill
I touched on this briefly yesterday, but the Bulls didn't exactly handle the firing of Tom Thibodeau that well. In fact, it went all kinds of lousy, which has again brought out unwanted attention to their front office. Only, this will go on for a while. They sent Thibs out the door so loudly, it's going to be one of the common demoninators for outsiders who talk Bulls around the water cooler. That's the new perception they're going to have to deal with, and rightfully so. They made their own bed, and it got messy. The only downside is that Bulls fans will now be subjected to more mentions of it, and for a while at that.

Doug McDermott
Let's be honest. McDermott in some capacity didn't have a rookie season. It was more of a prolonged training camp that lasted for damn near a year. A true test will come under Hoiberg, where he's bound to get minutes. The addition of McDermott into a set rotation could possibly do wonders for Chicago's spacing, and it might even help both Rose and Butler add a few percentages to their efficiency because of it. He's the one guy who right now has the chance to come in and change the team for the better, right off the bat, by just playing more. It's by no means a lock that he will succeed, but given his resumé and pedigree, I'd argue he's deserved a shot after sitting so long.

And finally...

This team will be different
Not only will the playing style change, but so will the roster. Draft choices might be made on the basis of Fred's offense as opposed to Tom's defense, and likewise for free agent decisions. The entire identify of the Bulls will change from being these gritty grinders, to having a deeper offensive impact, as well as being more well-rounded. That doesn't mean they won't be a solid defensive team, but the Tom Thibodeau intensity won't hang over them anymore, which at times will be good, and other times won't be. What exactly they'll turn into is anyone's guess, but it'll be a different look and feel than what we've all been used to.


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  • I'm just concerned Hoiberg could become the new Marc Trestman. Sure, the Bears' offense got much better but the team lost its defensive identity. Bottom line, the Bears were much worse than before.

    I'm not sure if Bulls fans will be happy with a steady diet of Niko's missed assignments or McDermott's inability to keep up with more athletic players. Hope I'm wrong and Fred can develop a defensive scheme to hide these guys' weaknesses.

  • We already know what we were getting out of Thibs. Another play-hard season with early exit playoffs due to players exhausted or hurt. Probably worst than this year, since Thibs had lost the players. With Fred, it appears he is an elite offensive coach and likely the players and FO will be in honeymoon at least next season. If both Fred and FO are smart, they would agree to hire a defensive minded assistant coach. To me, this brings a better hope for the fans than what we would likely have with the same-old Thibs and his defensive-work-hard-lose-playoffs coach.

  • interesting comment from Grantland

    "The Pelicans? Anthony Davis is good, but advanced stats — PER especially — exaggerate just how dominant he is right now. He’s not Jordan or Wilt"

    or Oscar, or Magic or Larry, or Lebron or Kobe or on and on and on...

    Hmmn, I seem to remember somebody making that same comment, or asking that same question a number of times earlier this season when Davis was threatening to break the "all time record" PER.

    However, as all basketball savants know, you are what your PER says you are.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    also from Grantland

    "It’s how most basketball arguments go on the Internet. Experts point to stats to settle arguments, ex-players point to experience, and nobody really listens to one another. Everyone is too defensive to admit the other side has a point. (This is also how every argument goes on the Internet.)"

    "Barkley, last seen getting wooed with $1,700 worth of wine and tequila (!!!) by Turner executives who don’t care that he openly ignores most of the league, makes himself an easy target for backlash. But he’s basically right, isn’t he? Look at the Clippers and Hawks the past two weeks. Go back and watch the end of that Thunder-Spurs series."

  • In reply to BigWay:

    Is this Bryan Curtis? Just feel like we should give the author credit.

  • Just read on Bleacher Report that Ron Adams was pushing for the Bulls to draft Draymond Green instead of Marquis Teague in the 2012 draft. First time I have heard that. I seem to remember Adams had a difference of opinion with the FO on the Snell pick a year later.

    Btw, players picked after Teague: Festus Ezeli; Jae Crowder; Draymond Green; Green; Kris Middleton.

    Also, Royce White of Iowa State was in the 2012 NBA draft. Rumor is Hoiberg may try to get him to play for the Bulls next year. White hates to fly, has a history of mental illness, has five baby mommas- sounds like a good idea.

  • In reply to hgarbell:

    Good point about Ron Adams who also was upset over letting Asik and Korver go. I'm surprised that it's leaking that they are going for after Alvin Gentry considering he's coaching with Ron Adams and Steve kerr. Two people that have ties to Chicago and can tell him plenty of the goings on in the FO and the Owner.

  • I wish the Bulls didn't drag Thibs thru the mud on his way out. Just uncalled for, even if all true. Maybe the Bulls felt the need to justify the move to their fans?

    I'm not so sure Thibs is still seen as the elite coach many thought he was a couple years ago.

    Looking forward to Fred. Per Bernstein, 3 starters were on record as saying they would not work out at Advocare this summer if Thibs were to be around. Says a lot. Prob Noah, Butler and Gasol.

  • In reply to Granby:

    To me, there's no doubt that Thibs isn't seen as the elite coach he was a few years back.

    While many, many Bulls fans think this roster lacks in talent, it seems obvious that league insiders and experts (plus the national media) couldn't disagree more.

    They saw Mirotic tear it up in March and barely play afterwards. They saw Hinrich be over the hill but still play ahead of Snell, who also played quite well when given a chance to play consistent minutes.

    They saw this team have a 2 games to 1 lead over Cleveland until Pau got hurt and missed the next two games. They saw Pau have the 2nd-best +/- in Game 6, but he played less than 24 minutes. They saw Niko have the best +/- in the same game but only get 13 minutes.

    The majority of the national folks picked the Bulls to win the series vs CLE, because they could see that the Bulls had the talent advantage.

    Now that the deed is done, do you see any national folks ripping on the Bulls for firing Thibs? Maybe a few, but the overwhelming majority can see that the Bulls are much better off without Thibs.

  • In reply to Granby:

    They thoroughly trashed him like I haven't seen a professional team do since the Cavs Owner shit on James on his way out. Even the mess that became the San Francisco 49ers with Haurbaugh didn't end up like this. Both parties left with some dignity even though the acrimony was nearly exactly the same. I never had respect for Gar, but I'm surprised that Pax went this route and allowed his owner to make an ass out of himself on the national stage. This will stick with the Bulls along time. Much like Krause and his crumbs, and organizations win championships.

  • In reply to Cali786:

    "I haven't seen a professional team do since the Cavs Owner shit on James on his way out."

    "This will stick with the Bulls along time."

    Do you realize how comical those two statements are when uttered in the same post?

    How long did it stick with the Cavs' owner? As soon as LeBron's contract expired, he signed on to play for that same owner. Even after being "shit on".

  • In reply to Don Ellis:


  • In reply to Cali786:

    Jerry is a big boy. He doesn't hire guys to keep him from making an ass out of himself on the national stage. Do you honestly think that he would allow Pax to have the final say on that press release? We may never know the real reason why Jerry said what he said, but, make no mistake, he was 100% behind that statement.

  • I, for one, am excited for what the rest of this offseason will entail - especially if the Bulls hire Hoiberg. IMO you will see huge jumps in the play of Snell, McD, and Mirotic if he is hired. While his Iowa State teams had some iffy defense at best, how bad can the D get with Jimmy Butler shutting down the opposing team's best player?

  • Surprised to say that New York daily News actually have some good insight on Thibs getting fired and correctly pointing out how the dysfunction was a two way street. .http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/basketball/isola-front-office-thibodeau-bulls-eye-start-article-1.2239688

  • Ominous prediction... Lebron fires Blatt and replaces him with Thibs.

  • In reply to SunnyD:

    Why on earth would Lebron do that to himself? The way Thibs coaches he would almost certainly bench JR Smith and Shumpert and instead give all their minutes to Marian because he's been in the league longer and used to be a great defender. He wouldn't give Tristan Thompson a chance either and instead would be playing Haywood. I'm so glad Thibs is gone.

  • In reply to ajaychitown:

    Not a chance Shump has a similar game to Butler he would likely ride him 40 mins a night. Actually Thibs D with the Cavs offensive acumen on paper would be a scary marriage for the rest of the East.

    Adrian Woj has a great article on how Bulls FO couldn't stand Thibs getting all the credit for the Bulls success. They finally showed everyone their true colors no more hiding truth is out now! If this Hoiberg situation fails or Bulls manage to miss playoffs things will get interesting. Given GarPax track record there is a 100 percent chance Hoiberg relationship ends in flames. He is a fool to leave the cush job at Iowa where everyone loves him to come work with these ass clowns who have eventually despised every coach they've ever hired.

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