These Bulls still have so far to go

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Here is a summary of Fred Hoiberg's tenure since the Bulls' vaunted, exhaustive, worldwide search -- a thing that never happened, and is now a punch line inside league circles -- unearthed him as Tom Thibodeau's replacement in the spring of nike nfl jerseys paypal

• Year 1: Hoiberg inherits the remnants of Thibodeau's defensive grinder. Joakim Noah is in decline. A stray elbow busts Derrick Rose's orbital bone during a preseason practice, slowing his integration into Hoiberg's offense.

Jimmy Butler emerges as Chicago's best player (by far), and annoys teammates by flaunting his new alpha dog status. He clashes with Hoiberg. After a mid-December loss, Butler declares the Bulls need to "be coached harder at times," an early indication that Butler doesn't fully respect Hoiberg's authority. The organization was concerned about Hoiberg's hold over the team then, and never really stopped being concerned until Monday morning's announcement.3

The Bulls are light on shooting, and heavy on ball-stoppers -- a poor fit for Hoiberg's preferred pace-and-space style. Holdover players urge Hoiberg to reinstall some of Thibodeau's old sets, sources tell ESPN in the winter of 2015. "Fred put in a lot of ball movement, but we have a lot of guys who hold the ball a lot," Noah tells then.

• Year 2: The Bulls trade Rose and let Noah walk to New York, presumably opening a path to a roster more styled for Hoiberg's system. They sit out free agency in the summer of 2016 -- the summer of the cap spike, of Bismack Biyombo and Timofey Mozgov and Ian Mahinmi and Luol Deng and Kent Bazemore and, umm, Noah -- hoarding their space for future summers and/or in-season money dumps from teams about to feel intense buyer's remorse.

Smart! But as free agency lurches to a halt, the Bulls notice two decorated All-Star veterans remain available. They cannot resist the chance to add Rajon Rondo and Dwyane Wade on fat (partially guaranteed) two-year deals, vaporizing that carefully carved out space, and handing Hoiberg -- pace-and-space Hoiberg -- perhaps the worst 3-point shooting team in the league. To cap it off, they trade Tony Snell for Michael nfl nike jerseys from china

They sneak into the playoffs, and lead the top-seeded Celtics 2-0 before Rondo injures his thumb. They lose the next four games. They also give us Three Alphas, maybe the worst nickname for any cluster of stars, ever, in any sport, and certainly the most absurd.

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