Jimmy Butler’s Got To Go

The Chicago Bulls before the season were supposed to be a team that could challenge in the East. With the acquisitions of veterans Rajon Rondo and Dwyane Wade, the Bulls gave Jimmy Butler some assistance as they tried to make the playoffs again. The Bulls did indeed make the playoffs, but it was not the way that was expected. The team was uneven all season long, as constant rotation changes, butting heads and puzzling coaching decisions constantly threw them on and off track all year long. They pulled it together in the playoffs for a second versus the Boston Celtics, but that quickly went away after Rondo hurt his wrist in their Game 2 win in Boston. Heading into the offseason, the Bulls have some decisions to make. They not only have a decision on Rondo, but on Nikola Mirotic as well along with if they want to give Michael Carter-Williams another chance in the Windy City. Along with that decision has come the talk about Jimmy Butler. The veteran guard/forward has gotten better each and every season as he ascended to the star of the team. While he has made this ascension though, the Bulls have not gotten better unfortunately and as it looks, the Bulls will not be very good yet again next season. So if you are Jimmy Butler, do you stay or do you go?

Honestly, anytime anyone asks Butler about if he wants to be in Chicago, he always gives the same answers. He talks about how much he loves the city and how much he loves being a Chicago Bull. But in his heart of hearts, he has to think some other things. He has to take a look at the guy that is his head coach and wonder what the Bulls organization is thinking about. Fred Hoiberg may have been a good college head coach, but he has not got it together in the pros. He seems to be overmatched when it comes to coaching decisions and in his time as coach, has not even set a rotation more than ten games in a row. Hard to build team chemistry on the court when you don't know who is playing beside you from game to game. So, needless to say, Jimmy was out there with many different combinations but no set rotation. Along with the rotations, just take a look at the players the Bulls have brought in over the years. Players like Michael Carter-Williams and Jerian Grant made little to no impact for the Bulls this past season. Then let's take a look at the draft picks since 2010. Besides Jimmy Butler and to a smaller extent Bobby Portis, which ones have made an impact in a Bulls uniform? The Bulls missed on guys like James Johnson and Marquis Teague while giving up on a player like Jusuf Nurkic and a guy like Tony Snell, who actually played well once he was traded from Chicago to Milwaukee.

Looking at the consistent failures of the front office and the coaching staff, Butler has to be honest with himself. The Bulls are not going to give Butler a chance to win a title, not with the management they have in place and with the coaching staff they have around. So for Jimmy, he may want to leave and go cement his legacy somewhere else. Of course Jimmy is under contract for at least two more seasons before his player option year (which he will more than likely opt out of his deal at that time), but does he really want to wait that long to get to a team that is trying to win? There are no guarantees that he will have as good an opportunity to get out of Chicago as he has now. The Bulls are shopping him around and the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Boston Celtics are two teams that have been mentioned already. If I am Jimmy Butler, I am praying that one of these two teams makes the move to get me. The Cavs have won the Eastern Conference three times in a row and a title in that process. As for the Celtics, they are definitely on the uptick with money to burn and talent to trade. With the Cavs, LeBron is a free agent next summer and that could mean him leaving town again, but Cleveland would still be able to rely on the pairing of Kyrie and Butler. They may be in the running for a title again, but it could be short-lived. As for the Celtics, they have continued to make strides, but they still have some work to do and adding Butler will not be enough to get them to the top. But the good thing is they are in good position not only this summer, but next summer and the year after that. Their big decision will be on giving Isaiah Thomas an extension or not.

The Cavs situation may look interesting right now, especially after General Manager David Griffin and Cleveland officially parted ways on Monday, but it still looks better than Chicago's because at least the best player in the world is there with them. As for Boston, the Celtics have one of the best front office guys in the NBA in Danny Ainge, so Butler would be in a great position to succeed. Their coaching/front office combination is the antithesis of the Bulls front office. So while Jimmy may not be a free agent, he surely can be crossing his fingers that he is able to escape the Windy City. If that combination of Hoiberg and Paxson along with Gar Foreman are still running things, then the Bulls will continue to run in quicksand, getting nowhere fast. Do what is best for you Jimmy even if that is forcing a trade. The organization isn't loyal to you anyway because if they were, they would not be shopping you the way they are.

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