This year I am celebrating my 20th anniversary- no not with an actual human spouse- but rather with my dedicated position in life as a Chicago Bulls fan. Like most marriages, the first few years were great and eventually reality set in and the road became a little rocky. But no matter how tumultuous things got (Dalibor Bagaric, AJ Guyton) there was always high hope for a beautiful tomorrow (Eddy Curry, the next Shaq! Tyson Chandler, the next KG!). And then one day, after redundantly putting up with the same issues, mistakes, and pain for years; you wake up beside your loved one to find yourself completely over it. You realize you've become the walking embodiment of the "definition of insanity," constantly trying the same stupid routine and never getting anywhere. Never getting closer to happiness; it is all just a facade and a ruse. Well today was the morning that I finally woke up and told the Bulls "we need to talk."
Of all things, it was probably Mike Dunleavy's smitten little smile that set me off. Down by 3 to the tanking Magic, and in a great position to lose, Dunleavy ruins my hopes for a higher draft pick by coming off a screen and nailing a game tying three. Carlos Boozer, a man paid 70million dollars to ride the bench in crunch time, jumps out of his seat and gives Dunleavy a high-five. Joakim Noah pumps his fist repeatedly and screams at the top of his lungs like we just beat the Heat in Game 7. Tom Thibodeau applauds and grins ear to ear like a perspectiveless Cheshire Cat. Jimmy Butler slumps over imagining himself in a retirement home, pinned to a wheelchair and playing bridge at the age of 47. The entire scene made me absolutely sick.
I love the tenacity of Joakim Noah, but sometimes the brain needs to work with the heart. In 3 years when Joakim Noah is playing on a .500 team and still hasn't won a championship, I hope he looks back fondly on Jan. 15th 2014, the day he beat the Orlando Magic. While Mike Dunleavy will probably never be able to tell his grand kids about winning a playoff series, he can surely tell them about the bankshot he hit to beat the Bucks in the middle of December. Blog-A-Bull posters who revel in our wins and talk about the possible 4th seed as if it is Shangri-La, I have good news for you- there are a lot of 4th seeds in our future. This charade has to stop. We are better than this. Jameer Nelson is no dummy, TWICE last night he pawned the game winning shot off to Big Baby Davis from behind the three point line. He is doing god’s work for the Magic.
The other night I went to a club with my meathead friend Paulie. He injected steroids, went to a tanning bed, bought a $300 shirt from Sak’s, and at the club spent $1500 he didn’t have on a credit card. He then proceeded to have condomless sex with a random stranger who looked like a late night Cinemax movie star. When I questioned his antics the next day he responded "Yo. I live in the moment bro." It was right then and there that I realized Tom Thibodeau is the ultimate meathead. I could totally picture Tom answering "Yo I live for the moment bro," when queried on why he played Jimmy Turf Toe Butler 60mins in ONE game. I am starting to wonder what Tom would NOT do to win a meaningless regular season game. And guess what, the ultimate irony is that these games are NOT meaningless- LOSING them could mean a whole heck of a lot.
This entire team and organization lacks perspective. I’m beginning to think trading Deng was more an act of contrition than a real attempt to do the right thing and tank. The Top 5 picks this year are franchise changers, don’t listen to Sam Smith who has turned into the Bulls.com Tokyo Rose; Tyrus Thomas and Derrick Williams are NOT part of this draft. Everyone praises the Spurs organization, but let us not forget they held out Robinson to give themselves a shot at landing Duncan. The Bulls on the other hand orchestrated a hot streak at the end of the 2003 season (the Lebron draft) that netted them Kirk Hinrich- and his grit. Our front office, coaches, and players should have the perspective to do the right thing and put this team into a position to tank the season out. And our fans should be smart enough to support it.