We have arguably the most interesting who-will-be-the-Chicago-Bulls-next-head-coach rumor yet:
Woj is reporting that the Bulls “are expected to have interest in considering” Billy Donovan, who is a coaching free agent after he and the Oklahoma City Thunder amicably parted ways on Tuesday.
“Interest in considering” is about as non-committal as it gets and the Bulls have “interest in considering” probably a dozen guys around the league. They’ve reportedly already done a first round of interviews.
What separates Billy Donovan from all others in contention the caliber of experience. He made a name for himself in Gainesville as the head coach of the Florida Gators. In 19 years at the helm, he had an over 70 percent winning percentage, won back-to-back national championships in 2006 and 2007 ( he is Joakim Noah approved), made two additional Final Fours, and made the NCAA tournament in 14 of his 19 seasons at the helm.
After all his success with Florida, Donovan made the jump to the NBA accepting a head coaching job with the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2015. In the NBA, he hasn’t won a championship yet, but has a 60 percent winning percentage, made a conference finals in 2016 falling in an epic 4-3 series against the Golden State Warriors, and has made the playoffs in all five of his seasons. This year he won the National Basketball Coaches Association’s co-coach of the year with Milwaukee Bucks head coach Mike Budenholzer.
In terms of head coaching accomplishments, Donovan outshines any other reported candidate for the Bulls job.
But according to Woj’s report a reason Donovan chose to mutually part ways with the Thunder was he didn’t want to be part of a full-blown rebuild. If he didn’t want to rebuild with the Thunder, would he want to rebuild with the Bulls whose rebuild is a few steps further along but far from complete?
I’d imagine that any team with a head coaching vacancy would immediately be making calls to Donovan to get him an interview. NBA insiders have already linked his name with the Philadelphia 76ers, Indiana Pacers, and New Orleans Pelicans.
So Bulls, if you’re serious about wanting Donovan to be your next head coach please don’t drag your feet.