Del Negro not sole cause of Bulls’ weak performance

By Allyson Kloster

Right now, Chicago Bulls fans are forced to watch an age-old children’s story unravel: The unruly children terrorize every babysitter who mom and dad hire, creating a mad house. If there is an especially brave babysitter, he’ll need to establish his authority before he can even think about making changes to the way the children behave.

If that seems obvious, how can anyone expect head coach Vinny Del Negro to apply clever coaching tactics when he can’t win his team’s respect?

Perhaps Del Negro isn’t a Nanny McPhee or Mrs. Doubtfire. But that doesn’t mean the children’s poor behavior should be attributed to him.

Most people realize this. It goes without saying that the Bulls are pitiful, with or without Del Negro.

That is why, when talking about the sad state of the Bulls, Del Negro’s name shouldn’t even be muttered. He’s simply a distraction. Instead of following his pitfalls, we should focus on the source of the problem.

Get The Daily Illini in your inbox!

  • Catch the latest on University of Illinois news, sports, and more. Delivered every weekday.
  • Stay up to date on all things Illini sports. Delivered every Monday.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.
Thank you for subscribing!

In other words, the inability of the Bulls to keep a coach longer than Hogwarts keeps a Defense Against the Dark Arts professor is merely an unfortunate side effect of the pathetic mess of Chicago’s franchise.

This mess is akin to how the children graffiti walls as their ignorant parents turn their heads away from the problem.

It’s unfortunate that Del Negro has to constantly defend himself and the state of his locker room. Why should he put up with the drama? He was not hired for that. He was hired to coach.

But instead of coaching, Del Negro’s main job is to be a distraction from the heart of the issue – that the team has no heart. Rather than embracing how the team members are merely sedated androids, everyone futilely looks for fire in the eyes of the players where, at best, there are sparks.

When Del Negro shrugged off guard Ben Gordon’s public fit by saying passion off the court might transfer to fire on the court, there appeared to be potential for flames.

But we must resist the temptation to shout “It’s alive!” when players uncharacteristically exhibit life-like behaviors, since history has shown that the fire won’t appear out of nowhere.

Signs of tension, miscommunication and disrespect are hardly original from the Bulls’ roster as of late. Not once this season have they translated to better performances on the court, so what makes us think this time will yield anything different?

One of the best ways to get the fire going is to let the coach start it. But how will that happen if he isn’t allowed to lay the branches down?

Del Negro needs and deserves support from the owners, rather than worrying about getting chopped by the guillotine that’s looming over his head after every loss.

Clearly, firing every coach is not going to solve the problem. All that shows is how lazy and fearful general manager John Paxson and the rest of management are. They’re hoping to strike it rich in another lottery, this time for a coach that will magically transform the Bulls into contenders. Great idea, really. Takes guts.

But if you really want to make significant improvements, why not put on your thinking caps and get some backbone?

For starters, instead of firing Del Negro (which management undoubtedly will do), why not fire all the players?

ALL OF THEM (except Derrick Rose)!

Del Negro, too, if you’d like. But that won’t make things any better.

Allyson Kloster is a senior in Media. She can be reached at [email protected]