I guess we shouldn’t be surprised.
I never truly believed the Bulls were serious about Mike D’Antoni as head coach. That would have meant handing the reigns to an outsider, someone who could potentially disagree with John Paxson and Jerry Reinsdorf. It didn’t sound like the Bulls I’ve come to know so well.
Doug Collins makes perfect sense. He’s a Reinsdorf guy. He and Pax will work perfectly together, since they probably have the same mindset when it comes to the roster and Collins is the guy Paxson reportedly wanted all along.
Personally, I don’t understand why the same guys keep getting recycled for these head coaching gigs. Why not take a flier on Kurt Rambis or Brian Shaw instead of a known commodity like Collins, who, by the way, hasn’t won a playoff series since 1989?
Perhaps that’s just the Lakers fan in me talking, but I’m curious to see how this plays out. I feel like the Bulls are two or three moves away from contending for a championship, and the hiring of Collins leads me to believe Paxson feels the same way. If he didn’t feel good about this team, he would have gone with a young, unproven coach who could grow with the roster.
Now, the next question the Bulls need to answer is what their roster will look like next season. If memory serves me correctly, Collins always talked up Luol Deng during TNT broadcasts. I bet he gets a contract, but I felt that way all along.
I’ll guess the next moves are Derrick Rose with the top pick, a Kirk Hinrich trade to Portland for expiring contracts, and the same problem the Bulls always seem to have: no go-to scorer.
Drafting Michael Beasley or trading the top pick would be too risky, and this organization tends to play it safe.
The Collins hiring feels like that to me. I should have seen it coming all along.