The Chicago Bulls hired Billy Donovan to become their next head coach and Charles Barkley is not a fan.
“Only two jobs worse than that (the Bulls head coaching job): the captain of the Titanic and my fitness coach,” Barkley said Wednesday night on TNT.
“They ain’t got no good players… He could have waited for a better job.”
Donovan, 55, takes over a Bulls team who went 22-43 this season and finished in eleventh place in the NBA’s Eastern Conference standings.
“I’m excited to partner with Arturas as we work together on behalf of this historic franchise,” Donovan said in a released statement.
Earlier this month, Donovan and the Oklahoma City Thunder parted ways after five NBA seasons.
In those five seasons, Donovan compiled a 243–157 coaching record while making the postseason each year and advancing past the first round just once.
The Bulls went through an extensive coaching search. Other names considered for the Bulls coaching job included Denver Nuggets assistant coach Wes Unseld, Jr., ex-Brooklyn Nets head coach Kenny Atkinson, Milwaukee Bucks assistant coach Darvin Ham, Toronto Raptors assistant coach Adrian Griffin and Minnesota Timberwolves associate head coach David Vanterpool.
Also worth noting: While on TNT’s Inside The NBA Wednesday night, Charles Barkley stated: “The Bulls don’t have a good team.”
Charles Barkley: “The Bulls don’t have a good team.”
— 👑📍Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson, M.A. (@ScoopB) September 23, 2020
Bulls Twitter wasn’t happy:
charles barkley… no no no… we have a very good young team, we just HAD a SHIT coach. literally, the WORST coach in the league last season and before. give us a break g. https://t.co/TSsiSMAcjS
— AxelCapalot 6’2 🇵🇷🇨🇴 (@AxelDreammz) September 23, 2020
That’s why we’re making moves to put ourselves in a position where we can develop the guys that we have and hopefully attract future free agents so we can become a good team. Donovan is a step in the right direction, Charles! https://t.co/iQKQouGKiQ
— Chicago Bulls Manila (@BullsNationPH) September 23, 2020
Their players got just as many rings as you tho 🤷♂️ https://t.co/A2Ay8J6sgU
— Bleacher Nation Bulls (@BN_Bulls) September 23, 2020
Billy Donovan replaces Jim Boylen who was hired in December 2018 and fired this summer after compiling a 39-84 record.
Donovan inherits a Bulls roster that features star swingman, Zach LaVine. The UCLA product averaged 25.5 points, 4.8 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 1.5 steals per contest this season and was a borderline NBA All-Star. “By the end of the season, once we get team success, everybody is going to think about that,” LaVine told me before the NBA All Star break in February.
“I believe in myself on the court, I know who I am and I know what I bring…It’s a little upsetting yeah, you think you could be in there, you know you want to play in the game obviously but it’s not going to deter from who I think I am every night and you know, I’ll get there eventually.”
Lauri Markkanen, Wendell Carter Jr., Thaddeus Young, Ryan Arcidiacono, Otto Porter Jr., Denzel Valentine, Shaquille Harrison and Chandler Hutchison fill out that roster.
So does Coby White. The Bulls’ seventh pick in the 2019 NBA draft, the North Carolina Tar Heel shot 35.4% from downtown in his rookie season and averaged 13.2 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.7 assists per game.