This Jim Boylen Thing Is Really Starting To Get on My Nerves (and Other Bulls Bullets)

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This Jim Boylen Thing Is Really Starting To Get on My Nerves (and Other Bulls Bullets)

Chicago Bulls

If you have Hulu and can watch Palm Springs, I highly recommend you do so (Michael: And I highly recommend you take Eli’s advice).

•   I swear, the Chicago Bulls are allergic to good press. After finally moving on from the GarPax era, and hiring two well-respected names around the league, the Bulls found themselves with momentum for the first time in … well … a long time. All things considered, keeping that momentum through this extended offseason didn’t seem like it would be all that hard to do. As long as the organization continued to rebuild the front office infrastructure, next season could easily re-energize this exhausted fan base. Instead, here we sit on July 17th, and the Bulls somehow found a way to screw up a practically unscrew-upabble situation. As the days tick by, Jim Boylen remains under center. And the longer the Bulls wait to fire him, the more it feels as though he’ll be on the bench come the start of the 2019-20 season.

•   Rather than continue to try and come up with reasons why there is internal hesitation to fire Boylen – as a lot of us have done – perhaps we should take a page out of the Darnell Mayberry playbook. The Athletic’s Bulls beat reporter put together a great article that beautifully describes why it makes no sense for Boylen to keep his job. I hope someone puts the following paragraph firmly on Karnisovas’ desk: “His .317 winning percentage ranks as the second-worst in franchise history, trailing only Tim Floyd. He was promoted in hopes that he could instill discipline and improved habits into one of the league’s youngest rosters, and instead the Bulls rebelled, regressed and repeatedly lost. He implemented an offensive system that either didn’t fit his roster or one in which his players were ill-prepared to play. Most damning is how, in spite of his celebrated care factor, he butted heads with several players. More than a few players this season voiced frustration with Boylen’s methods, some even openly mocking him.”

•   Despite all of what Mayberry pointed out above, the Bulls have somehow made Boylen feel safe. The head coach flaunted his comfort within the organization to reporters the other day (and if you missed that, check out our post from yesterday). He once again referenced the team’s injuries and youth as an excuse for a lackluster 2019-20 campaign. By keeping Boylen around, Karnisovas and Eversley are doing the exact opposite of what they were reportedly brought on to do – change the culture, change the narrative, change the reputation. Everything about Boylen screams GarPax, and I just don’t understand how the Bulls think they can justify keeping him around.

•   I’m thinking now that Jerry Reinsdorf has begged Karnisovas to hold off on a coaching search until a final decision on a second bubble has been made. If a bubble happens, or even some other voluntary team activities, Karnisovas can than prove he took a legitimate look at Boylen’s on-court coaching ability. If that bubble doesn’t happen, hopefully, he can exercise that “full autonomy” and just say “sorry Jerry, I’m not waiting any longer.”

•   Also, flames began to come out of my skull when I read about Boylen the CEO. For Reinsdorf to ask a completely inexperienced head coach to put his hands in so many areas of the organization is ridiculously irresponsible. Of course, we all know it’s because he saw an avenue to save money. The Bulls have run with one of the smallest front offices in the NBA for years and telling Boylen – who makes less than $2 million a year – to control several areas of the organization means Reinsdorf can get away with fewer mouths to feed. With that said, to believe these other jobs were getting in the way of his coaching ability – in any significant way, at least – is ignorant. Nothing about me thinks that more time to just focus on coaching will all of sudden turn Boylen into Greg Popovich. We’ve seen what he can … and that’s lose games while simultaneously getting his players to dislike him.

•   Here’s an idea: Trade the pick?

•   I’m not sold on any one of these three players, and I think the Bulls can get one of potentially equal value a couple of sports down. Karnisovas has finessed his way through some draft night trades in the past, and if he sees a way to grab some additional assets, I’d be perfectly happy going that route. I’m also prepared to trust both Karnisovas and Eversley in this draft. I may be a tad pissed at them right now with this whole Boylen thing, but they’ve both proven to have a good eye for young talent in the past.

•   GOAT always looked fresh.

•   So pretty to watch.

Author: Elias Schuster

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