Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Like Chicago really needed another "Vinny"

And so begins the era of Del Negro for the Chicago Bulls...pray for us.

"Having played 14 years at the professional level and several more as an executive in the front office, I am looking forward to this opportunity and the challenges that lie ahead as head coach of the Bulls," said Del Negro.

"There are a lot of things to like about this young Bulls team," he added. "My efforts are going to be geared specifically toward getting the best out of each player - whatever their particular strengths may be that make them most successful."

Allow me to translate Vinny's words into what I think he was trying to say:

"Look, everyone knows me for my ability to hit shots from anywhere and my fucking kickass name, but I'm more than just a one trick pony. This job seems like a pretty sweet gig, all I gotta do is a better job than whoever this Boylan character was and I look like the next Phil Jackson. It's win win!"

"My efforts are going to be figuring out who the hell is still on this team once we trade most of these useless fucks away, then try to see if they are actually worth a shit. Strengths? Nobody on this team is stronger than me, I can guarantee that. I've played with that asshole Hughes before and I still don't think I've seen him make a fuckin' shot."

Oh, and just in case you were looking for some clever pun with the new coach's name, sorry but I tried everything I could think of and couldn't think of one that either, A) Hadn't been already used or B) Wasn't racist. You try googling "Negro jokes" while at work, I dare you.

I welcome any puns/jokes/quips in the comments.

1 comment:

SportyJoe said...

Hiring Vinny Del Negro is a bleh move by GM John Paxson. I do like the idea of grabbing a coach that comes from a offensive-based team and focuses on guard play (which means look for Derrick Rose to be the #1 overall pick), but Steve Nash is a 3-time MVP and generally draws a double team opening up low-post options for Amare Stoudamire. Paxson has a lot of explaining to do and problems to fix. It’s time to wait and see…bringing in a guy from a winning program in the west generally is a good idea. My pick would have been Avery Johnson just because of what he accomplished without Steve Nash, and Flip Saunders would have been ok too. Not great, just OK. Mike D’Antoni would have been acceptable, but coaches know not to come here because of Paxson, and these are all really lateral moves because they only may jump the team up in playoff seatings, not get them to the level where they will dominate the East. Again, that is the responsibility of the GM.

Losing on a Kobe Bryant deal and holding on to Luol Deng looks really stupid, and it is, the firing of Skiles by recommendation of his players, and the legal and disciplinary troubles with rookie Joakim Noah have him on the hot seat big time. Jerry Reinsdorf usually likes to place a lot of trust in his GMs, and for what he can say about Jerry Krause, Krause put a winner on the floor. But it was probably a good idea to draft Michael Jordan when the Bulls had the chance. Krause put players out there to fill roles, not just be “tweeners” that might or might not mesh on a game-by-game basis. Undersized and over assigned, this current team is a house of cards waiting for a number one pick to let it all fall apart. Hey, there’s that role filling thing again. The Suns added a veteran, former dominant big man in Shaq for a title run this year, and look how that turned out. Strike two for Paxson…Ben Wallace was the biggest bust in Bulls history.

My opinion, skewed as it may be, is to hire a coach that can pull performances out of his players that exceed even his expectations. Have them play up, not play at. Form a unit. Pull the players up to a higher level, not push them up. Give them a level of expectation rather than be relaxed in their own skill sets. This is hard to do at the professional level, and the fundamental question is how to get a coach who will inspire and police a team. It is easy to do with high schoolers, but players getting paid to play is another story. Motivation is much different, and teams expect their players to play with that attitude, as they should. Isn’t that what Skiles was trying to do when for all intensive purposes, Ben Wallace got him fired? What I do not mean though, is have a guy that is 6’6” play center and have your best scorer be a role player who dumps when he starts.

Side note…the Bulls had a pic of Joakim Noah standing next to Wallace on their website and Noah towered over him. Unfortunately, although I am a UF fan, Noah is going to be a wasted pick unless he gets traded to New York for garbage like usual.

Paxson has a lot of self-imposed troubles; a bad roster, fires to put out with the ownership, and no coach. Which is why this draft and hire is the most important of his managerial career. That part is obvious, but what he will decide to do to satisfy ownership, to which the result will fix the rest of the organization, will be up to him. That is why Doug Collins got into the mix in the first place. If this does not get turned around this year, look for Paxson to be packing up his title rings, banners, and 3-peat shirts and being out of a job.

The one upside to all of this is that Reinsdorf, who I do respect the heck out of, will not allow his ownership groups to be embarrassed any further than this. His placement of Kenny Williams in the White Sox is still a great move because they choose not to deal with questionable players and have the organization run very well, save for the manager. But hey, I’m a Sox fan and love Guillen as compared with other managers in MLB. Who else is better? Bobby Cox is a good manger (and before you jump down my throat to say he is a great manager, ask yourself how many divisions did he win and how many World Series did the Braves win with those rotations and lineups?). They could have fired Ozzie and gotten the much-pursued Joe Girardi or Lou Piniella when they had the chance so they would not have to deal with Guillen’s mouth. The laundry list of juiced players precedes itself; Al Belle, Jose Canseco, James Baldwin, Magglio Ordonez, Carlos Lee, and Jose Valentin are gone. Now this is only speculation. I did not contribute to the Mitchell Report nor do I have insider information, but look what happened every time a player messed around with Ron Schueler and Williams. They all got a one-way ticket out of town. That is also probably why Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Miguel Cabrera, and many others did not come to Chicago. In my humble opinion, the players play, the coaches coach, and the executives execute. Period. Executives like players who take their job seriously and come to work every day. To the common person, someone who holds out on a lucrative contract may not understand the player is trying to position himself for a deal.

Look for Noah to be gone very soon. My best guess is a package deal with Heinrich to a team like the Hawks, who may be looking for some first round talent and a veteran to get them to the next level. What they get from them? Who cares…no one else will really even trade with the Bulls unless it is garbage for garbage.