Jerry Reinsdorf Rumors
“Knowing Derrick as I do makes this trade a hard one. Everyone knows him as the local kid who became MVP for his hometown team, but not everyone got to know him like I did. While he is a terrific basketball player, he is an even better person with a tremendous heart,” said Chicago Bulls Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf. “I wish him the best of health for the remainder of his career, and I want to personally thank him for everything that he did on the court and in the community during his time with the Chicago Bulls.”
The comments made some wonder if Lacob understands how lucky he is to have such a mild-mannered MVP leading his team. The league’s history is littered with stars pushing back against their team’s owner, never moreso than those days when Jordan would never let Chicago Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf get away with that kind of misguided talk. Yet here was Curry, handling the situation with a much quieter style. “Yeah, uh, very interesting development,” Curry said with a wry grin when asked about the story. “Joe texted me right after the story was released, kind of explaining where he was coming from, what he meant to say, this and that. So I would assume the reason he texted me was not just to have a cover-up but more the respect of, like you said, we’re out here playing every single night and trying to put our team and our organization in the best position we can, win as many games as we can, as many championships as we can, and build that credibility as we go forward.
Lacob, aware how Curry might takes his words, had reached him before he read the story. “I didn’t even know about (the story), so I didn’t have time to really have a reaction,” Curry said. “But one, you don’t want to disrespect the teams like the Spurs and the Lakers, franchises that have obviously won multiple championships and established that top tier kind of winning mentality every single year and you know they’re going to be around. We want to be that team. We want to be that franchise. We have some work to do, and obviously we’re on the right path. But we have to be ourselves in the whole process, and not really worry about speaking (about) more than what we’re doing out there on the floor.”
But Butler’s emboldened state after landing a max contract led to several disruptive moments throughout the season, in film sessions and on the practice floor, sources said. That they continued sometimes unchecked throughout the season didn’t bode well for team chemistry, which started to fray in Thibodeau’s last season. In fact, that reason is why there’s optimism for Hoiberg’s future. Even management now believes this core was held together one season too long, that any coach would’ve struggled to overcome this tired team’s tendency to give in to adversity.
All indications are executive vice president John Paxson and general manager Gar Forman will lead that attempt. Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf long has valued management continuity and praises Paxson in any rare interview. Forman has cultivated a strong relationship with Michael Reinsdorf, the team’s president and chief executive officer. Their wives run the Bulls’ charity arm.
Hoiberg is viewed as his hire, though it was signed off on unanimously. Forman prevailed in the internal debate over whether to try to finalize a Pau Gasol-to-the-Kings trade deadline deal, though there was sentiment that with Mike Dunleavy just back the team could make a run as well as not loving the return from the Kings. Forman then publicly doubled down on re-signing Gasol, calling him part of the core. That stance has softened with Noah a priority, sources said, and Gasol also will entertain free-agency options.