Karnisovas Officially Announced, Forman "Poisoned the Well," Attracting Free Agents to Chicago, and Other Bulls Bullets

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Karnisovas Officially Announced, Forman “Poisoned the Well,” Attracting Free Agents to Chicago, and Other Bulls Bullets

Chicago Bulls



This has been a public service announcement.

  • Phew, good, the Bulls can’t turn back now!

  • Earlier this morning, the Bulls officially announced Arturas Karnisovas as their new front office leader. And to put a cherry on top, they also fired Gar Forman and moved John Paxson into a senior advisory role. Yup, believe it or not, the GarPax era has finally come to an end in Chicago. Karnisovas spoke with the media over a conference call following the announcement (and we’ll have more on that later), but here is his first official statement from the team’s press release:

“This is the height of a dream for me, and I am prepared for the challenge that it presents. I grew up watching the Chicago Bulls. They represented American basketball and the NBA to a kid from Lithuania. I’ve always had a love for this franchise and to be a part of it and influence its revival is a privilege. I want to thank Jerry and Michael Reinsdorf and the entire Bulls organization for presenting me with this opportunity and welcoming me and my family to Chicago.”

  • Karnisovas hasn’t shied away from mentioning the “challenge” that will come with running this organization (he also brought this up during the teleconference), and I commend him for that. Fans have been pushed away for years by this front office’s continuous complacency. But by already hiring new pieces (and straight-up firing Gar Forman), Karnisovas has shown Bulls fans everywhere that he’s ready to regain their trust. At the end of the day, it’ll all come down to the on-court production, but I’m at least ready to start believing in this team’s future again.
  •  In the meantime, Jim Boylen is a suck-up:

  • Whoever let the head coach have a press release needs their keys taken away. I don’t trust that person on the road.
  • For anyone worrying that Boylen is here to stay – don’t. At this point, I’d say we have more reasons to believe Boylen is on his way out than on his way to a second full season as head coach. Not only does his record speak for itself, but it’s just hard to imagine the Bulls undergoing this big of change without confronting the elephant in the United Center. Michael Reinsdorf even said it himself, this organization is “at a crossroad.” Out with the old, in with the new.
  • Also, Karnisovas likes offense … and that’s not really Boylen’s thing (what is his thing?):

  • Hmmm.

  • For the most part, this is a believable sentiment. I have little doubt that the Bulls (former!) regime was particularly attractive to any big-time NBA free agents, so any change up top is a step in the right direction. Forman, in particular, had a rough history, and certainly wasn’t known as a “people person.” However, I also doubt this fixes everything for the Bulls on the free-agent market. Karnisovas’ presence alone has immediately bolstered their perception across the league (and additional front office moves will bolster their efforts), but reputations don’t change overnight. Sadly, the Bulls are generally not considered a premier destination for big-time free agents (at least not for a LONG time). Plus, the team itself is still surrounded by a handful of question marks. I have faith that Karnisovas can help lure players to the Windy City eventually, but it’ll have to start with a better product on the court first.
  • I guess the good news is the upcoming free agent class isn’t all that special? He’s got time?
  • From 2003-2020, the Bulls refused to make a change.

  • By the way, when I was deciding what to put on that list, I learned 2003 was an incredibly boring year. I mean, the Marlins, Bucs, and Devils all won championships. Boring.
  • Zach LaVine made Paul Pierce look like an 80-year-old man last night during the HORSE tournament.


  • I have to admit, I didn’t hate the first round. The camera work was crappy and the first matchup between Trae Young and Chauncey Billups was kind of a snooze-fest, but it got better as it went on. I still think Zach LaVine should be able to dunk though. I mean, just give the people with less hops a trampoline or something, that’ll basically even the playing field.
  • I can’t wait for Chicago to be this pumped about basketball again:


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Author: Elias Schuster

Elias Schuster is the Lead Bulls Writer at Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Schuster_Elias.