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Bulls new front office plans pointlessly-lengthy evaluation of holdovers, including Jim Boylen

is this genuine, or influenced by ownership?

NBA: Utah Jazz at Chicago Bulls Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

I regret to inform everyone that the momentum of optimism surrounding the new Bulls front office hires has stalled. It was a good two months we had there!

In comments to reporters over the weekend, Arturas Karnisovas, new ‘sole authority over basketball us’, revealed troubling details of how he plans on embarking toward his first offseason now that their prior season was mercy-killed.

When Karnisovas does arrive in Chicago, he plans to sit down with Boylen, the coaching staff and holdover front office members for basketball philosophy discussions and film review.

Only then, Karnisovas said, will he make a decision on the future of Boylen and others.

“To make a decision about coaching is really hard. It’s probably the hardest thing for executives. So I look at a lot of aspects. I’ve had numerous conversations. That said, I’d like to be in a building, to be in practices, to be around the coaching staff in meetings. We’re looking forward to getting in the video room together, analyze the games, to watch games together.”

It could’ve been worse, as Karnisovas implied that if the Bulls season wasn’t cut short he would’ve stuck with Boylen:

Our intention was to return to play at some point and have the opportunity to make informed decisions.


Prior lamentations over the delay in making an easy and popularly-agreed-upon decision at least considered that the NBA calendar was still on pause and the principals weren’t in the same location. But now it’s looking like any moves - not just Boylen, there’s no immediate plans to add/subtract from the front office either - are blocked by this evaluation process.

‘Fire Karny’ shirt stencil hasn’t been sent to the printers just yet, but here are two reasons why this is taking longer than it should:

  1. Karnisovas isn’t apt to make what should be a very easy evaluation. Did NBC Sports Chicago burn all footage from Boylen’s season and a half reign of buffoonery?
  2. Ownership (and a couple very powerful ‘advisors’) are meddling.

Neither are good!

To build a strawman, I ‘have seen on Twitter’ that it’s some kind of public relations motivation to not get this over and done with quickly. For one thing, I don’t believe Jim Boylen has earned enough respect to think his launching will be even noticed by ‘the coaching fraternity’. And if Karnisovas and team truly want to be ‘players first’, then worry about the relationship with them first, and they don’t want to have any interaction with Boylen as their head coach anymore. If it’s ‘relations’ with ownership and their advisors that Karnisovas is worried about, and we’ve seen plenty of reporting on that faction supporting Boylen, he shouldn’t be made to have that as a consideration. Let the guy get an early win.

If this evaluation is merely perfunctory, and Karnisovas does indeed just feel the need to ‘be in our building’ to fire somebody under contract (it looks like that’s the distinction with other personnel decisions since he took over), then that’s still odd yet more acceptable. A weeks-long job interview of someone you (should) know isn’t right for the position makes little sense.