Tom Thibodeau contract negotiation: Bulls intend to pick up option for 2012-13, talk extension

"BRAINS!" (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)

Some side-news from the knee surgery press conference Tuesday, where Bulls GM Gar Forman also addressed the media:

General manager Gar Forman said the team will pick up coach Tom Thibodeau's option for next season and will starting working on an extension this summer.

"Obviously, we value Tom greatly," Forman said. "We value what he brings to the organization and what he brings to the team and think he's one of the finest coaches in the league and we're hopeful he'll be our coach long-term.

One thing I'm curious of: does this option year precludes any kind of raise Thibs would receive through an extension? If they work out a contract extension, would that start this coming season and the option year is 'ripped up'? Or would it start only after next season?

I think the difference matters because this upcoming third year of the original contract likely is still going to be underpaying the nearly two-time coach of the year. So I could still see some hard-lined negotiation (as it always is with the Bulls) to come when it gets to the part of actually factoring in a raise (and when) for Thibs. There has already been plays through the media by Thibs's camp.

In related news, Dallas extended their coach Rick Carlisle with a 4-year contract. I had originally thought (and sorry for spreading misinformation in the comments) that Carlisle was in a similar situation to Thibs, but indeed Carlisle would've been completely without a contract on 7/1, whereas the Bulls had this option year for Thibodeau.

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