Report: Bulls coaches fear offices bugged, club wants Thibodeau gone
The Chicago Bulls sit a game up on the favored Cavs in their Eastern Conference playoff series. For the first time since the 2011 postseason, star point guard Derrick Rose is relatively healthy and playing significant minutes every game. And thanks to coach Tom Thibodeau's relentless defense, they are a far bigger favorite in the eyes of Las Vegas oddsmakers to win the East and the NBA championship than top-seeded Atlanta.
And yet, in the words of Yahoo Sports!/FOX Sports 1 NBA Insider Adrian Wojnarowski, "management can't wait to rid itself of one Tom Thibodeau."
In a story posted to Yahoo! Sports early Tuesday, Wojnarowski painted a picture of disjointed, if not outright bizarre, life at Bulls headquarters. From management trying to get Rose to sell Thibodeau out to assistant coaches worried their offices are bugged, the Bulls' offices are a place where, regardless of how this postseason plays out, Thibodeau is not long for. From Wojnarowski's column:
As for the assertion management tried to pin the mishandling of Rose's trove of injuries:
The rift between management and coach is so apparent, Wojnarowski reported that even a visiting scout could see it while watching GM Gar Forman and Thibodeau interact. And that's when the paranoia apparently showed itself:
But Wojnarowski also paints a picture of a team aware of the situation, and yet more determined than ever to win for its coach:
As for Thibodeau's take on the talk of his imminent departure from the Windy City?
"Ahhhh, that's all noise," Thibodeau told Wojnarowski. "In this league, it's so easy to get sidetracked. There's so much noise. Trades. Free agency. This. That. Whatever. To me, none of that is important. All that matters is what we think. Are we doing the right things every day? Are we putting the proper work in? Are we playing the right way? Practicing the right way? That's how you play well in this league. All that other stuff is just noise, it doesn't mean anything."