- Geek & Sci-Fi
First-time nominees for the 2013 Hall of Fame were revealed today by NBA.com, a list that includes just one big name but many more, lower-profile influencers on the game as it's played today.
Nearly 30 years ago, Michael Jordan came back too soon from the only major injury of his career, and even today, Bulls' chairman Jerry Reinsdorf counts his fortunes every night before he goes to sleep.
The year was 1988.
No, I haven't swallowed 15 Tylenols. Yet. As things continue to get worse and worse for the LeBron James fan club, the option appears less and less foolish though. I'm only kidding, America. Really, I am. But while the team from Miami dominates the headlines - seriously, every fifth word on SportsCenter is either "Miami," "Heat," "LeBron," "Wade," "Spoelstra" or "cry" - it is the team from the Windy City making all the progress. Bulls chairman Jerry Reinsdorf is a quiet man; always has been. He's also a gentleman who has seen his fair share of success and failure over the years, but staunchly remained the one constant for the organization since the early 1980's. The Chicago Sun Times caught up with NBA veteran (which is odd because the guy rarely gives interviews) who was more than eager to recount stories surfacing from as far back to his early days on the job to how current coach Tom Thibodeau may have had the most impressive recommendations known to man. Here, learn yourself something. On How Arne Duncan (U.S. Secretary Of Education) And President Obama Vouched For Thibodeau: After two seasons with Del Negro, the Bulls were again in the market for a new coach. Again, Obama’s advisers entered the picture. Keep in mind that Duncan, the former CEO of the Chicago Public Schools, was the co-captain of the Harvard basketball team and played professionally in Australia. So he knows something about basketball. And he knows Thibodeau well. Thibs was an assistant coach at Harvard who helped develop Duncan’s game. ‘‘When the job was open again, I talked to Duncan several times on the subject, and he still strongly recommended Thibodeau,’’ Reins-dorf recalled. ‘‘So we hired him. Then in July 2010, the White Sox were playing in Washington, and we invited President Obama to come to the game. ‘‘First, David Axelrod [then Obama’s senior adviser] arrived and said, ‘Thanks for hiring Thibodeau.’ Then a little while later, President Obama came in and the first thing he said to me was, ‘Great hire.’ On His Early Hesitations About Michael Jordan: ‘‘I didn’t have the slightest idea who Michael Jordan was,’’ Reinsdorf said. ‘‘I knew he was a two-time Player of the Year in college, where he was an 18-point-a-game scorer. And when [former Bulls general manager] Rod Thorn drafted him, he said something like, ‘He’s going to be a fine offensive player. But you’re not going to build a franchise around him.’ “So, I did not know what I was buying, and [the previous owners] did not realize what they were selling. But by the time we closed on the transaction [in early 1985], Michael was already a star. Did I think we’d win multiple championships with him? No. But I was hoping we’d win a championship if we built the team the right way.’’ On Derrick Rose: If Reinsdorf had questions in 1984 about who Jordan was and what the team would do with him, he has no such questions about Rose and what these Bulls will do. ‘‘If you don’t see something special in Derrick Rose, then you’re blind,’’ Reinsdorf said. ‘‘We have an outstanding coach, an outstanding bunch of players, the team is deep, and if we stay healthy, we have an awfully good chance of winning at least four championships.’’ To take in the entire article, head over to the Sun Times website.
While Phil Jackson is still trying to figure out Phoenix's zone defense in time for Game 5 tonight, his name is being circulated wildly in coaching rumors.