An anonymous NBA scout previews the Bulls for the 2017-16 season.

October 20, 2016

"I feel really bad for Fred. He's a great guy. He left Iowa State, he was the fucking mayor. And now he's gotta coach this debacle. ... They're not gonna be horrible, but their three key guys, Wade, Rondo, Jimmy, are three guys that prefer not to shoot off the catch. They like to dribble, they like to hold the ball, stop the ball. It's going to be hard to coax ball movement out of that. ... Rondo and Wade are very undisciplined defensively at their age. They'll gamble a lot. They take shortcuts. ... I like Mirotic. He's one saving grace for that team. He takes some weird shots, but he can shoot, he can pass. They need him to play a lot of minutes alongside those other guys to give them enough space to operate. ... Portis will be a good player. Arkansas plays really unstructured basketball, so he didn't get a lot of understanding of NBA offensive or defensive concepts. But he's got good size, a good body, he can shoot a little bit, he plays really hard. Once he gets a little more comfortable, he'll be decent. … Jimmy is quite good. He's evolved into more of a star. He wants the ball in iso, which is OK if he's the go-to creator. But I do think a good coach would get him to consider catching the ball on the move more, and playing off movement more ... Look at it like this. Harrison Barnes is sort of a bad version of Jimmy Butler. And Mark Jackson was iso'ing Harrison Barnes all the time in Golden State, then Kerr went away from that, and Barnes didn't get as many touches, but he got better looks. ... So I do think Jimmy might have to modify his game a little bit in certain places. But he's very effective at what he does. ... I just don't like the mix they have with those three guys. Like they're all gung ho and saying the right things about making it work now, but once they start taking some L's, I think those three are gonna bump heads a little bit. ... Hoiberg has two guys who are both heavily athleticism-reliant, brilliant players when they were younger, but not the same players they were, and not totally aware of it. That's a really hard coaching assignment. And last year he had Derrick Rose trying to prove he could still be Derrick Rose, Noah physically done, Pau... You know, Thibs' last team was sort of held together by scotch tape. A bunch of old, broken down guys, and Thibs is coachin' his ass off and losing his fucking mind to drag every last drop of winning out of that group. And then in comes Fred, a lot more laid back, and he's inheriting these guys who have been basically squeezed dry over five very successful years with Thibs. It's like, "Hey, make something good out of this." ... The front office there is in a tough position because they made a big thing in the Chicago media about how the team would be better with a different coach, Thibs was hurting the team in a variety of ways, etc. That had grains of truth to it, but it wasn't really fair to Thibs, even though he was a pain in the ass for them. But they've staked themselves on this idea that we're going to be better without Thibs, whereas the right thing to do would've been to assess the team last year, see that it was basically at the endpoint for that core, and start a rebuild around a younger group. They couldn't admit that the team needed to be rebuilt. So they went the other direction and just tried to win the press conferences. I don't think that's going to be a successful strategy. ... It wouldn't stun me if they were the 7th or 8th seed. More likely they are 9 or 10. But that's their range."

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