The Chicago Bulls and coach Tom Thibodeau are reportedly agreed on the fact that he will leave the franchise this summer as soon as they find a replacement.
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Speculation has claimed for some time that no matter how well the Bulls did this season, the organisation was adamant that they would be searching for a replacement this summer.
With an endless list of issues with Thibodeau in recent years, Chicago’s early exit from the NBA Playoffs 2015 was seemingly the last straw as they were embarrassed by the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 6 on Thursday night to fall to a 4-2 series defeat.
As one source close to the situation puts it: “Thibs is gone. They know it and he knows it,” ESPN reports.
It is still unclear as to how the situation will unfold given that the Bulls coach still has two years remaining on his contract worth $9m, and so they will either be hoping that Thibodeau goes first or an interested team offers a significant compensation package.
With both the New Orleans Pelicans and Orlando Magic monitoring the situation according to reports, they will likely have some offers to consider this summer, but it is also suggested that they want to get a commitment from his successor first.
Iowa State coach Fred Hoiberg has previously been linked with the role, but Golden State Warriors assistant coach Alvin Gentry has more recently become the frontrunner if speculation is to be believed around the league.
However, it isn’t completely out of the question that Thibodeau remains in his role given that there has been discord between the two parties for years and yet they have managed to maintain a working relationship.
If no satisfactory offer is forthcoming, the Bulls may well have to go forward hoping that their under-fire coach can bounce back from the disappointment of this year.