The ping-pong balls have been selected and draft picks lined up. The Bulls hold the 16th and 19th selections in a 2014 draft that though light on instant stars will be deep with talent. Coming off a disappointing first round exit from the playoffs, one would assume this summer's wheeling and dealing by NBA executives would include the Bulls. However, the team historically has played things conservatively and may just stand pat with their selections. There may be no moving up or no players getting moved out, but speculation would lean toward change rather than the familiar hum-drum of the Bulls front office.
The surprising rumors about Coach Thibs trades and his apparent unhappiness with Bulls management were at first comical, however, now they have become a bit concerning to me. Is there more to this story than the average fan is privy to know and could the rift over Ron Adams firing have festered to the point that the Bulls front office would ship out the best thing to happen to the team since Derrick Rose was drafted ? Only time will tell, but the repeating news about the situation has left me thinking where there is smoke there is fire, and Coach Thibs refusal to extinguish these flames with a quick comment in an interview will just add to my suspicion.
As for the team, this summer is a critical time in what will or will not become of the careers of their players and the organizations pursuit of championships. How their dual general managers handle this summers draft, trade opportunities and the rights to Nikola Mirotic will ripple for years to come. Lastly, the structure of contracts has been a major problem for Chicago since signing Carlos Boozer in 2010, and hopefully for fans this issue will be addressed soon. The Miami Heat can win with low-ball contracts on their bench, because they posses a dominate core of King James, Prince Wade and the court jester Chris. The Bulls core is still developing and changing and that is what the organization needs to address first. They must first align the sun and than the planets should orbit nicely. That is how things worked out with Jordan and that is how things could work with a healthy Rose.
If the team truly wishes to be crowned kings of basketball, they first must know what will become of their beloved hometown hero. They have hitched their wagons to Rose and whether playing the role of healthy hero or sideline suit wearer, he will be a decisive factor to all their ambitions of championships. The one thing more transforming to the team than the uncertainly of Rose's future is the certainty of his either re-rise to greatness or his fall from glory. This is why this summer is so crucial, and aligning pieces now so important. The Bulls front office is tasked not only with developing their team around a mystery, but insuring that team against that mystery becoming a tragedy.