Chicago Bulls: Jim Boylen ‘empowered’ to do his job right now

Jim Boylen, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Jim Boylen, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images) /

The coaching situation with the Chicago Bulls looks like it could be a patient process entering the 2020 offseason. But some want Jim Boylen gone quick.

Certainly the most speculation surrounding the Chicago Bulls at the moment concerns the job status of current head coach Jim Boylen. This hot topic won’t go away until the new look Bulls front office regime figures out what direction they’re going to take this coaching staff in.

There’s going to be a continued rumor mill as to whether the Bulls will replace Boylen, and who they would do so with. Boylen is not the most popular head coach the Bulls ever had with the fans, to say the very least. And his record as head coach over the last two seasons doesn’t do much to help his case (39-84).

If the Bulls do try and replace Boylen, then they need to conduct an actual candidate search to find a better head coach the next time around. Former Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg was also hired on a whim. That was part of the mounting frustration for why the front office couldn’t handle head coaching searches.

And there could be some movement already in the planning for the next coaching search. According to a report from K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago last week, Boylen is still encouraged to keep working on his current role.

Here’s what that piece had to say on the matter.

"With all the rumors about Boylen eventually getting fired, do you have any idea how the new leadership is addressing this internally with Boylen and his staff? I imagine Boylen reads this stuff, as well. Is there a chance he has already been told he’s out the door or is it radio silence from all sides about [his] future? – Jason M.Karnisovas has told Boylen and his staff to focus on coaching for now. This, to me, shines a light on Karnisovas’ leadership style. At least for now, he’s empowering Boylen to do his job. That means film study, draft prep, contact with players, voluntary workouts at the Advocate Center (now that those are allowed), assigning projects to assistant coaches on how to get personnel better. Typical offseason stuff.Until he’s told otherwise, Boylen is the coach. This is a big boy league. Everybody understands what can happen when new management comes in. Karnisovas has empowered Boylen for now while also communicating that he and general manager Marc Eversley will evaluate all departments."

This part of the mailbag from Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago shows the different approach that former Denver Nuggets general manager Arturas Karnisovas takes to professionalism than the previous front office regime. The approach isn’t wrong, but it is more patient than a lot of other front offices would take with this.

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The Bulls rounded up with a record of 22-43 through the first 65 games of the 2019-20 regular season. But 65 games is all they will get since the novel coronavirus pandemic cancelled out the rest of the regular season for some of the bottom eight teams in the NBA standings. The Bulls are one of six teams in the Eastern Conference that won’t be participating in the NBA’s 22-team restart plan, with games starting late next month at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL.