Friday May 15th, 2015

Iowa State coach Fred Hoiberg is considered the top candidate in coaching circles to take over the Chicago Bulls if the team parts ways with Tom Thibodeau, according to ESPN's Marc Stein.

Bleacher Report's Howard Beck reports that "there's skepticism" the Bulls could pull Hoiberg away from Iowa State. 

The Bulls' season ended Thursday when the team fell to the Cleveland Cavaliers, 94-73, in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference semifinals in Chicago. The Bulls lost three straight games in the series after beating the Cavs in Game 1 in Cleveland, and Game 3 at home.

Stein reported after the game that Thibodeau and front-office officials are "utterly done with each other."

As one source close to the situation puts it: "Thibs is gone. They know it and he knows it."

Stein also reported that if Chicago's efforts to lure Hoiberg from Iowa State are unsuccessful, Bulls assistant coach Adrian Griffin could be a contender to replace Thibodeau.

Beck also reports that a "plugged-in" source considers Golden State Warriors assistant and former Phoenix Suns head coach Alvin Gentry is the favorite to take over the Bulls.

Over five seasons as the Bulls' coach, Thibodeau, who is renowned for his defensive expertise, has led the team to a 255-139 record and a playoff appearance in each season. Thibodeau was named the NBA's coach of the year in 2010-11.

A separate report from Stein said that the Orlando Magic are interested in Thibodeau and that there is "mutual interest" between Thibodeau and the New Orleans Pelicans.

Hoiberg has guided the Cyclones to 99 wins and four NCAA tournament appearances over the last four seasons. Before being hired at Iowa State in 2010, he played 10 seasons in the NBA and served in the Minnesota Timberwolves' front office. 

• WOO: Questions linger for Bulls after loss

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