Angry Coach = Unpredictable Future?
Following my last post about the Andrew Bynum-Luol Deng trade, it now seems that Tom Thibodeau, head coach of the Bulls, is upset about trading Luol Deng. It’s no secret that Deng was one of Coach Thibodeau’s favorite players. So trading him just to free up salary cap space, must send him a message that the Bulls’ front office is prepared to tank the season and try to get a good draft pick in the Draft Lottery in June.
It’s discouraging for head coach, to get the direction from the front office that they’re ready to give up on the season. It also must put doubt into a coach’s mind as to whether or not the management believes in your ability to lead the team. Coach Thibodeau should not be excessively worried, especially given his past successes. But I do wonder whether or not this would influence him to go to another team.
Even without Deng, the Bulls should at least be a challenge for a playoff spot. They still have Joakim Noah, Carlos Boozer, and D.J. Augustin, as well as a great bench that can take Chicago far. Additionally, with a full $20 million saved in cap space (dropping Bynum added to the $14.3 million they already saved by trading Deng), there’s confidence that the Bulls can sign another star player to play alongside Derrick Rose, which might inspire this year’s team to do well in order to attract a big name player.
The best next step for Coach Thibodeau would be to sit the team down and have a discussion about how, since Derrick Rose is out for the season and their surrogate leader, Luol Deng, has been traded, the team will move past this obstacle and seek out who will step up to the plate to take his spot. I’d suppose that Jimmy Butler, their second-year small forward out of Marquette, would be the first in line to step up and fill Deng’s shoes.