Tom Thibodeau Fired After Five Seasons
In a move that has been building for some time, the Chicago Bulls have announced that they have fired their head coach, Tom Thibodeau. The Bulls exited the playoffs in the second round, but it was rumored that rift between him and the front office ran so deep that not even winning a championship would be enough to save his job.
While Tom Thibodeau never won a championship in Chicago, it would be hard to categorize his tenure in the Windy City as anything but successful. He was known as a player’s coach who routinely got the most out of his team, especially on defense where his Bulls team have lead the NBA in points per game allowed and opponent’s field goal percentage during his tenure.
His ability to get the best out of his players may have also been part of his downfall in the end. His teams were known for putting together great regular seasons, 255-139 in five seasons, but possibly running out of gas and faltering in the playoffs, where he has a 23-28 record, often becoming stagnant on offense.
In a sense their series defeat to the Cleveland Cavaliers was a microcosm of Thibodeau’s shortcomings in Chicago. They had a tremendously talented team but had far too many stretches where they were stagnant on offense and struggled to score points, while a Cavs team struggling with injuries routinely was able to score points in bunches.
People will wonder what could’ve been if Derrick Rose had been able to stay healthy and Thibodeau could have relied on him night in and night out instead of him only appearing in 181 of 394 games over the past five years.
But even with Rose’s injury problems, the Bulls’ front office still felt they should’ve gotten more out of this year’s team and others, which was ultimately why Thibodeau was fired.
The Bulls job will be attractive because of the market, team history, and the roster they have is one of the best in the NBA if they can keep restricted free agent Jimmy Butler, so the Bulls will be able to attract top candidates
Tom Thibodeau will also be in high demand given the success (albeit limited in the postseason) that he had in Chicago.