Listen, I've heard all the complaints, and criticism about the hiring of the former Phoenix Suns asst. GM, and new head coach of the Chicago Bulls. I can't lie i had my skepticism, and yes criticism at first. The hiring of 41 year old, Vinny Del Negro was a bit of a shock to us all. Especially considering the other supposedly much more qualified candidates out there. Guys like Mike D'Antoni, Avery Johnson, Flip Saunders, and Doug Collins just to name a few.
Now I know what you're thinking, because frankly, I was thinking the same thing until recently. If you're like me most of you are thinking, wow, typical Jerry Reinsdorf move right? Or maybe you are thinking this is one more step in the wrong direction, and are simply awaiting the next. Brooke Lopez with the first pick? I highly doubt that. The consensus was that Bulls Chariman Jerry Reinsdorf seems to have Vice President of basketball operations, John Paxson on a short leash, and really doesn't care about the future of the Chicago Bulls franchise. Instead only concerns himself with his fiscal responsibilites. Am I close?
I don't know about you Bulls fans, but I was peticularly heated about one article I read in the Chicago Tribune yesterday. K.C. Johnson, posted an article supposedly revealing the contract details of Vinny Del Negro. In that article it stated and I quote, "The deal isn't complete, but sources said Del Negro will sign a two-year contract with a team option for a third season, and be paid roughly 2 million annually." "That will make him one of the leagues lowest paid coaches." Now I don't know who those sources were, but today in the official Vinny Del Negro introduction news conference, John Paxson adamantly refuted those allegations. When asked about those reports Pax genuinely stated, and again I quote, "First off in terms of the contract that information is wrong, but again somebody takes something and runs with it." "We don't give out terms of the deal, but i can tell you that's wrong."
Personally, I felt just like most of you after finding out Vinny would be our next coach. Especially considering the experience discrepancy, and more importantly after reading the article in the Tribune. I had a burning hinkling that Jerry Reinsdorf didn't care about the Bulls future at all. However, That flame was douced today after witnessing the 42 minute news conference live in it's entirety. All I have to say is i was supremely impressed by Vinny today, and especially in the Q&A segment of the confernce. His character definitley shined. He seemed very enthusiastic about the opportunity, had a great philosophy, made great points that were quick, precise, and to me seems like a wise choice for a coach.
Is it? Well, It's obviously too soon to tell. One thing we do know is Paxson went out on a limb for this guy, and I don't think it had anything to do with the money. I sensed Paxson sees something special in Vinny, and after seeing the conference today I have to admit i do too. I understand, the fact that's he's never coached before, and experience may be a factor, but every great coach had to start somewhere. Avery Johnson, and Doc Rivers both won C.O.Y. in their rookie seasons as coaches. As crazy as it may sound to you skeptical Bulls fans I get the feeling he'll end up being a great coach, and by next may Pax will look like a genius. So all I'm sayin is Give Vinny a chance before you completely resign our season like many of you already have. Plus you gotta admit the guy has great hair, and what coach with great hair hasn't been great? Remember a guy named Pat Riley? I'm just sayin.