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You keep saying the Bulls were a "whisper away." Were they or weren't they?
A couple of season under Thibs, yes, they certainly were.


Also, please describe for me how Derrick Rose, in his current state, is good.
He isn't. Many players on the Bulls have taken steps back this season under Hoiball.

Let's hope Fred can figure it out and get the most out of the players he's been given.
 

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A couple of season under Thibs, yes, they certainly were.
So then the FO gets credit for getting the team a "whisper away" from the Finals in those seasons, too, for whatever that is worth.


Let's hope Fred can figure it out and get the most out of the players he's been given.

Well, he's on a 51 win pace at this point, which is essentially what Thibs was able to pull out of this same group, though Fred is doing it without Dunleavy.
 

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So then the FO gets credit for getting the team a "whisper away" from the Finals in those seasons, too, for whatever that is worth.
Yes, Paxson gets credit for the years he's been on the job.

12 seasons.
0 championships.
0 nba finals appearances.
1 eastern conference finals appearance.

That's his career as a NBA front office guy.

A couple of those seasons under Thibs the Bulls were a whisper away from the Finals at least and the best 5 year run was of course under Thibs.

We all saw how Paxson treated Thibs as a reward.


Well, he's on a 51 win pace at this point, which is essentially what Thibs was able to pull out of this same group, though Fred is doing it without Dunleavy.
No doubt. Of course, nobody considers the Bulls a title contender anymore. And the fact that Hoiberg was supposed to improve the offense from the 11th most efficient offence in the NBA last season under Thibs and has made it one of the worst in basketball is troubling.

The team is seemingly playing hard enough for him to have a top defense though is a bright spot.

But we already knew most of these guys could play good defense.

Fred was supposed to improve the offense. Still plenty of time to improve.
 

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Thibs is a good coach. I love Thibs. (See my avatar.)

The Bulls are the only team that gave him a head coaching job in his 20 years in the league. Since his firing, despite multiple openings, he hasn't even scored an interview. That is telling.

Thibs had a good run. He got 5 years here, which is longer than your typical coaching stint. Had Derrick not blown his knees, perhaps Thibs would have won a ring and survived a little longer, despite his well-publicized personality issues. But, he didn't, and players were literally moving away during the offseason specifically to avoid him. I don't think anyone could legitimately believe that his time here had not run its course.
 

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I don't think anyone could legitimately believe that his time here had not run its course.
Thibs is a great coach. Not just good.

Reinvented the way defense is played in the NBA. Ring with the Celtics. Gold medal with Team USA. In the 12 years since MJ his Bulls teams were the only ones that were legit title contenders.



And he got the most out of his teams at an all-time NBA great level.

But yes, working with GarPax wasn't going to be an option anymore.

GarPax decided to smear Thibs in the season where the Bulls were one Lebron three and a Gasol ankle sprain away from having a legit road to the Finals. Classless and pointless for one, and as a fan waiting for the team to actually do something of note for many years now unforgivable.

But, whatever, that's in the past.

Going forward, the guy they were coveting while they were smearing Thibs was supposed to be some kind of offensive guru.

The Bulls are now one of the worst offenses in the NBA.

It would be like when Uncle Jerry hired Thibs from the Celtics despite Paxson wanting someone else and the Bulls were suddenly one of the worst defensive teams in basketball. That would make Thibs look pretty inept and make the hire look pretty stupid.

Of course that's not what happened. The Bulls ended the season as the best team in the league defensively. Thibs was good at his job and Uncle Jerry made a good call going to bat for a coach even though Paxson and Gar both wanted someone else.

Anyway, I don't think its a stretch to say that the hire so far looks pretty stupid, based on the premise on which he was hired.

Only 20+ games in and the guy deserves time to learn how to be a NBA coach (I’m not advocating firing Freddy, I’m saying give him time) but for those who felt that firing Thibs and bringing in Freddy was going to ignite the Bulls into a great offensive team, which improving much from 11th in the league under Thibs would mean, well, that's just looking pretty stupid so far.

Perhaps given time he can get it done and deserves the time to do so. The early returns based on why he was hired have been pretty awful. The offensive is terrible.
 

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sarcasm noted but it is really meaningless .

jerry tarkanian was far more successful and it went badly

pittino , calipari pj carlisimo, our very own tim Floyd from iowa state. all basically flopped

some people can make the transition and some cant and it actually appears prior collegiate success is not a good indicator, almost all if not all head coaches plucked from the college ranks are successful there 1st.
That's fine. I know full well plenty of NCAA coaches flop at the NBA level. I watched plenty of Bulls games during the Tim Floyd era, trust me. But there are some that don't flop and in fact have done quite well. TBH, it's probably a zero correlation either way.

I wasn't trying to debate the degree to which college success is an indicator of NBA success. I am merely refuting the notion that Hoiberg was some do-nothing coach at the NCAA level.
 

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That's fine. I know full well plenty of NCAA coaches flop at the NBA level. I watched plenty of Bulls games during the Tim Floyd era, trust me. But there are some that don't flop and in fact have done quite well. TBH, it's probably a zero correlation either way.

I wasn't trying to debate the degree to which college success is an indicator of NBA success. I am merely refuting the notion that Hoiberg was some do-nothing coach at the NCAA level.

Maybe there are examples that aren't coming to mind, but to some degree, wouldn't any college coach that made the transition to the NBA have achieved a degree of success in college? Basically, college success can't translate to NBA success, because all NBA coaches hired from the college ranks were successful college coaches. If a college coach is not successful, he won't get "promoted" to the NBA.

So really, it would seem the correct point is not all college coaches who become NBA coaches succeed. Sure, but neither do NBA coaches who were NBA assistants, etc. Most NBA coaches fail and get fired after a few years. I don't know if college coaches fail at any different rate than anyone else in that regard.
 

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Nice game to build from against Memphis. Maybe one of their better games of the year in terms of playing well both sides of the court. Also a 4-game win streak.

Up to 2nd in defense, 5th in three-point shooting, 6th in turnover mitigation, 7th in pace, 10th in assist %...if only those pesky layups and midrange shots would fall, we'd really be onto something great. Still can't complain about a 15-8 record and #2 seed int he deep EC given how many things haven't seemingly gone our way thus far (then again, do they ever?). Even if they keep this up, I still would advocate a trade deadline move, swapping one of our bigs for a PG upgrade.
 

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Nice game to build from against Memphis. Maybe one of their better games of the year in terms of playing well both sides of the court. Also a 4-game win streak.

Up to 2nd in defense, 5th in three-point shooting, 6th in turnover mitigation, 7th in pace, 10th in assist %...if only those pesky layups and midrange shots would fall, we'd really be onto something great. Still can't complain about a 15-8 record and #2 seed int he deep EC given how many things haven't seemingly gone our way thus far (then again, do they ever?). Even if they keep this up, I still would advocate a trade deadline move, swapping one of our bigs for a PG upgrade.

I am up for a trade as well, even as the team is looking a bit better. I think a backup PG is the #1 target only if Dunleavy makes it back. Otherwise, I'd be looking for a wing.
 

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I am up for a trade as well, even as the team is looking a bit better. I think a backup PG is the #1 target only if Dunleavy makes it back. Otherwise, I'd be looking for a wing.
Jrue Holiday? He's about the only guy I can think of who is a young productive veteran, can play both guard spots, shoot the 3-ball, man the point, and has enough size so as not to get abused defensively (ala Brooks). More importantly he is on a struggling team that may seek some changes with Anthony Davis as the centerpiece. It would probably take giving up Bobby Portis, though, along with a draft pick or two. More of an all-in move. But certainly the type of move I'd vouch for if the timing felt right, as it could put us over the top.
 

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Isn't the problem more starting point guard?

Derrick is getting 30+ a game. Brooks has been decent this season (one of the only guys scoring efficiently) and Hinrich is OK for 5 minutes here and there.

The Bulls have pretty good depth. The issue is that noone is a superstar and a couple guys (Rose and Noah) are playing well below their past levels of production. Both of these guys are the last two Bulls to make a all-NBA 1st team BTW, which makes it quite the sad situation at age 27 and 30.

Even so, its not that much of a problem, as the w-l record is good. But, the offense is sour and we all know what happens come playoff time when these guys are pitted against a superstar player. The thought was a higher-octane offense is what the team needed. Well, we don't have that. We have a strong defense (as usual) and a weaker than usual offense.
 

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Isn't the problem more starting point guard?

If you are in win-now mode, the problem isn't starting PG, from a roster construction standpoint. To contend now, Derrick must return to an All-Star level player.

If you believe that will never happen, and there is certainly reason to, then you're in win-later mode and would need to move on from Rose.
 

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Jrue Holiday? He's about the only guy I can think of who is a young productive veteran, can play both guard spots, shoot the 3-ball, man the point, and has enough size so as not to get abused defensively (ala Brooks). More importantly he is on a struggling team that may seek some changes with Anthony Davis as the centerpiece. It would probably take giving up Bobby Portis, though, along with a draft pick or two. More of an all-in move. But certainly the type of move I'd vouch for if the timing felt right, as it could put us over the top.
Holiday would be a great fit. I think you're right that it might take Portis to get him.
 

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If you are in win-now mode, the problem isn't starting PG, from a roster construction standpoint. To contend now, Derrick must return to an All-Star level player.

If you believe that will never happen, and there is certainly reason to, then you're in win-later mode and would need to move on from Rose.
Either way, the team has much bigger issues than backup point guard. Brooks is solid enough.

Totally agree that the front office needs to "pick a lane." Its unclear what exactly they believe.

One the one hand, they are running out Rose, Gasol, Gibson, Butler, Noah, (dunleavy soon) etc on a nightly basis, which is having your team based on veterans and going for "win now."

On the other hand, so much of the focus of last season, where the Bulls a whisper away from making the NBA Finals, was on developing young players. McDermott and Mirotic especially. That's a "win later" move.

And now in 4OT games those two rookies are not playing key roles and both are back to coming off the bench, despite a coaching change that in part was supposedly designed to unshackle those two players. Both are showing to be fairly average NBA players so far this season.

Doing both "win now" and "win later" at the same time is super difficult. Especially for a front office that has little experience in well over a decade of work of building a team that can advance far in the playoffs.

There is no evidence they can pull off "win now" much less "win now" and "win later" at the same time.
 

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Larry Brown is the only one I can think of off the top of my head (I'm like that guy who bursts into a conversation to make a point about something you were talking about 10 minutes ago, I'm not like that guy, I am that guy)
 

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Bulls lose in 4OT...ouch. It was actually a pretty fun game to watch. Very competitive, back and forth, both teams played pretty well overall. But man, that is a punch in the gut to lose. We had our chances to win (e.g., Rose missed potential game winner in regulation), but so did the Pistons. I thought we had it won in 3OT until Caldwell-Pope hit that ridiculous fadeaway 3-pointer with under a minute left. Real shame we couldn't get their guys to foul out earlier, they had about 4 guys playing with 5 fouls for the majority of OT.

TBH, I was questioning Hoiberg on why he wasn't substituting more in the OT's. You had Noah playing an awesome game for example and barely sniffed the court in OT. Noah's help D might've made all the difference with Reggie Jackson destroying us on floater after floater. But then it hit me, call this a hypothesis, maybe Hoiberg knows how bad our starting unit chemistry has been all year - and here they were tactually playing pretty well in a competitive situation. Maybe Fred just said screw it, if we lose we lose, let these guys gel together for once. You can't look me in the eye and think Tony Snell with the way he was playing yesterday should've been in there. Or Taj Gibson over Noah. Noah was terrific. Maybe I'm way off base. Unfortunately a loss is a loss...the Pistons played really well, way above their norm offensively. Andre Drummond is an absolute beast too, BTW, a freak of nature.
 

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So, what should the Bulls do?

They seemingly have turned a bit of a corner once Jimmy Butler called out the coaching staff and the offense is finally clicking and the wins are piling up.

Butler is looking like a potential all-NBA teamer. Gasol is once again defying father time and beasting. Taj is playing some solid ball and Rose is looking competent at least the last few games he's suited up.

That's a veteran "win now" core.

Should the Bulls be looking to trade the vets (Gasol, Gibson, Noah) and rebuild, add a veteran piece in a consolidation trade to increase the chances of "win now" or just stand pat.

Gasol might walk at the end of this season leaving the Bulls with a massive hole to fill. Can Butler be the 1A guy on a championship team? Are Mirotic and McDermott on a career track to be all-stars at some point? What should the Bulls do?
 

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So, what should the Bulls do?

They seemingly have turned a bit of a corner once Jimmy Butler called out the coaching staff and the offense is finally clicking and the wins are piling up.

Butler is looking like a potential all-NBA teamer. Gasol is once again defying father time and beasting. Taj is playing some solid ball and Rose is looking competent at least the last few games he's suited up.

That's a veteran "win now" core.

Should the Bulls be looking to trade the vets (Gasol, Gibson, Noah) and rebuild, add a veteran piece in a consolidation trade to increase the chances of "win now" or just stand pat.

Gasol might walk at the end of this season leaving the Bulls with a massive hole to fill. Can Butler be the 1A guy on a championship team? Are Mirotic and McDermott on a career track to be all-stars at some point? What should the Bulls do?

In my view, the Bulls are still a wing defender away from matching up well against the Cavs, and I'd support moving a piece or two (presumably a big) to address that issue. Asking Jimmy Buckets to guard LBJ all game and also be the #1 option on offense is asking quite a bit.

I don't think Butler is ever going to be an LBJ/Curry/Durant type of superstar, but he doesn't need to be. The Bulls are much more in the Spurs mode at this point, where you have a lot of different guys who can score, the ball moves around, etc. Butler certainly can assume that alpha dog role when needed, but you will also have nights like last night where the scoring is very balanced between Butler, Gasol, and Rose. That's what the team is really constructed to be at this point.

Mirotic and McDermott both look like they belong, but neither looks like an All-Star to me, and either could be moved if necessary. As you saw from McDermott last night, hit ability to knock down threes with his extremely fast release really opens things up for his teammates. He has progressed on the defensive end, but is still a minus defender. Niko is defending pretty well, but his offense is streaky and his decision-making a little wince-inducing. He is working out much, much better at the 3 than I expected, which is a pleasant surprise.
 

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Right now the Bulls have the 5th-best record in the NBA and the 2nd best in the Eastern Conference. The standings are closely packed so that can change on a daily basis. The team's best player is 26. Their other top minutes guys are 27, 35, 30, 24, 30, 24, 24 and 20.

If this team needs to rebuild, then probably 25 or so of the NBA's 30 teams need to rebuild. The idea is ridiculous.
 

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If this team needs to rebuild, then probably 25 or so of the NBA's 30 teams need to rebuild. The idea is ridiculous.
One would think, but just two weeks ago some were advocating trading Jimmy Butler after he called out the head coach. And the idea of trading Gasol has been bandied about through much of this season. Crazy if you are trying to "win now" I agree.

"Stand Pat" though, even with this roster, doesn't likely get you by Lebron and the Cavs or the Warriors or Spurs.

No banner gets raised to the rafters for finishing 2nd in your conference.
 
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