So I was just looking at the Bulls past rosters over the last couple of years and I noticed something. To my surprise, that we were either 1st or 2nd in the league for attendance for a number of years Sure, I knew that Chicago loved thier sports but second in the league? That's pretty darn good! Hell, are team wasn't even that loaded with talent but we brought in the fans.
To give you a good look at what I'm talking about, I will now post the win/loss record along with the attendance of each year begining from the post Jordan era: (Taken from www.basketball-reference.com)
Year Win-Loss record Attendance
1998-1999 13-37 1/29
1999-2000 17-65 9/29
2000-2001 15-67 19/29
2001-2002 21-61 9/29
2002-2003 30-52 5/29
2003-2004 23-59 3/29
2004-2005 47-35 2/29
2005-2006 43-39 2/30
2006-2007 49-33 1/30
2007-2008 33-49 2/30
2008-2009 41-41 2/30
2009-2010 7-11 21/30
Begining from 2003-2004 season (Hinrich as a rookie) we began seeing the surge in attendance. During the Scott Skiles era, we were averaging 2nd-3rd in the league for attendance. Let's just think about that for a second shall we? We didn't have any superstars on our team, yet we did good with what we got. Hey, even our win loss record improved with Skiles as coach. We even started making the playoffs once we drafted Gordon, Duhon, Deng and Nocioni. We were a pretty good team. Hell, we even made it past the first round in the 2006-2007 season against the Heat, but eventually lost to the Pistons in the semifinals. We never did any better than that and alas he was fired in 2007. Our win record started to go down once again. Then we had that epic seven game series against the Celtics which by many, was called one of the best playoff series in NBA history. Woah, not bad!
Flash forward to this season: Gordon is gone, and apparently so is Rose by the looks of things. The whole reason I write this article is the point out my last entry in the 2009-2010 column. . Take a look again in case you missed it. We are currently 21 out of 30 for league attendance! To put that number in prospective, even when we were a terrible team with a record of 15-67, we still had more people coming then to see these Bulls.
But should it be any surprise? We're losing game after game and not even puting forth an effort anymore! Now I know some of you are saying, "But D-Wade, it's still early in the season, surely our record and attendance will improve?!" No kids, I'm afraid not. Do any of us here honestly expect more people to see the Bulls play with games like the one yesterday? If we can't compete with the worst defensive team in the league, how do we expect to compete at all? The answer, according to Bulls managment, is "not this year".
It appears as if we are like the New York Knicks looking forward to next season rather then play this season. Scratch that, even the Knicks are playing better basketball then we are? So my question is what's the deal? What the hell is going on with this team? Can we salvage what we do have? Will firing VDN really help us that much this year? What if we don't land a superstar free agent at the 2, a scorer we so desperately need this upcomming offseason? These are the answers my friends that we will be looking for in the next couple of weeks. As of now? 2000-2001 Chicago Bulls here we come!
"Pssh, you guys haven't been good since I made this shot!"