It is no secret that the Chicago Bulls and coach Tom Thibodeau have their problems, and if reports are to be believed then Fred Hoiberg is the top choice to replace him.
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The Bulls are 42-29 for the season this year which is good enough for fourth spot in the Eastern Conference with 11 games remaining in the regular season.
As has been the case for the last few years now, Thibodeau has had to deal with injury blows to point guard Derrick Rose and other key members of his team.
However, throughout all the trials and tribulations, he has kept the team focused and consistently won against the odds, although the Bulls are certainly yet to get over a hurdle in the playoffs.
The criticism is that Thibodeau contributes to the injury woes in that he pushes his players too hard, and he doesn’t give enough of a chance to the younger players.
While that may be true, it doesn’t take away from the fact that he is one of the top coaches in the NBA and losing him would be a huge blow to Chicago which they may only appreciate after his departure.
According to Marc Stein of ESPN, it is widely believed that Iowa State coach Fred Hoiberg is the top choice of the Bulls front office to replace Thibodeau at the end of the season, and while that may bring a fresh approach, it isn’t one that is guaranteed to win games.
The most telling aspect of this situation is that if the Bulls part company with Thibodeau, there will be no shortage of teams interested in acquiring his services, and that says a lot in itself.
Thibodeau is well respected and has built a reputation of being a winner, and although he may not be the all-round coach that Chicago wants, their clash of personalities and opinions need to be set aside in order to allow him to continue to do his job and lead this franchise forward.
For all the talk in the media over how he plays his key men significant minutes, none of his players have ever come out and moaned about it. Joakim Noah even revealed his frustration that he couldn’t play more than 32 minutes this season due to his knee, and the general feeling is that the team is behind their coach.
Much will depend on what Chicago achieve this year as if Rose and Jimmy Butler return for the playoffs, then things might look a little different and the mood might change with success. However, another early playoff exit and it may well be the end of the Thibodeau era in the Windy City.