K.C. Johnson went off on the team in the Chicago Tribune today.
Johnson doesn't seem to level criticisms lightly, so this strikes me as something he's probably been thinking of for a while. There aren't any solutions put forth (I think we're all out of answers for this team) but it's a pretty scathing and comprehensive picture of the Bulls this season. There's a very interesting part about Aaron Gray and Nocioni's quotes are particularly blunt and it feels like he (Noce) has been sitting on them for a while.
"We don't have any stars on this team. We don't have anybody like LeBron or Kobe [Bryant] or Kevin Garnett. And everybody is unhappy the way the team is playing because we believe we can be in first place in the conference. So I think frustration is what sets off Tyrus or somebody else. It's getting worse and worse, so I hope that game helps us play more together."
Yeah, he's a chucker, but he and Noah are the two guys who seem to care every night, no matter what. I honestly don't know who needs to go and who should stay.
This got me thinking: looking at the standings, all the top teams of the East and West have clearly defined team leaders while most of those at the bottom don't have someone you can pick out as a leader. Maybe I'm making too much of this, but is it necessary to have a defined alpha male to win? Can you win with leadership by consensus? Is leadership overrated and are we (me) confusing leadership with quality of play on the court? Can the Bulls import a leader or are they better off growing one from the inside (Noah or Thabo)?
Just some Sunday afternoon thoughts.