Latest update of the never-ending coaching search:
WSCR-AM (670) reported first and the Sun-Times confirmed that Bulls chairman Jerry Reinsdorf wants to take as much time as he felt necessary to make sure he would be hiring Collins for the right reasons and not allow his close relationship with Collins to cloud this important decision.
Collins is said to understand Reinsdorf taking time to give the final OK. Collins, who at times has described Reinsdorf as being a father-figure, has made it clear to the Bulls and others that the only team he wants to coach is the Bulls. He has rebuffed overtures by the Phoenix Suns to become their next head coach.
The Bulls are not believed to be interested in Saunders, though things could change if Reinsdorf rejects Collins at this late stage. Sources close to the situation still expect Reinsdorf to ultimately hire Collins.
Bulls general manager John Paxson is said to be spending his time this week — while waiting for Reinsdorf's decision on Collins — trying to determine which player to take with the top overall pick in the draft.
The way this is worded jives with this report that Reinsdorf is the one who pursued Collins, not Paxson.
Just....ugh. I know there are worse owners out there, and an owner is completely entitled to be involved in the coaching carousel (the Pistons owner supposedly had a hand in Flip Saunders' undoing) ...but this just makes Paxson seem so impotent.
Maybe even Reinsdorf himself is starting to tire of 'Drew Diligence' (that's an alias Pax checks into hotels under) so he took the initiative and called up his old pal Collins to 'help a friend'. Or maybe Pax suggested a choice amongst the 647 assistant coaches he interviewed, but Reinsdorf didn't feel comfortable (especially after botching the D'Antoni pursuit) going with a rookie head coach.
Just hire Flip Saunders then.
Flip Fever hasn't caught on here completely, but I think that not only has his past successes (he's actually presided over an above-average offense) indicated that he's a better candidate than Collins, he's also without the 'will likely eventually freak out' baggage and the accompanying 'needs a succession plan' baggage.
But also, nearly as important (for selfish reasons, sure): nobody would have to deal with this Collins-Reinsdorf-Paxson-cominghome-bestpals.....crap. It's all just so much crap.
(Though maybe Paxson's tired of it all himself. There could be a possible out waiting for him.)