Today we are talking about Jim Boylen, who is arguably the worst coach in the NBA. He is the current head coach for the Chicago Bulls. Now, the Chicago Bulls are not a bad team. They are not a playoff team, but they have a young core with a bright future, which stars Zach Lavine and Lauri Markannean. But Jim Boylen might be the primary reason that they haven’t made the playoffs yet. I know those are harsh words, so I’m going to back them up and give you 5 reasons why Jim Boylen is the worst coach in the NBA currently. Well, really 4 with a bonus, but let’s get into it.
#5: Bad relationships with his players
A head coach should have a good relationship with his players, so that they respect each other and have a good relationship on and off court, or at least on. This is far from what the Chicago Bulls have currently. His questionable decisions lead his own players to not trust him or respect him. Zach Lavine recently came out on record and said that he didn’t trust him. This tension between players and coach have led them to a lack of wins. Even worse, the Bulls have been trying to cover up the lack of chemistry, by saying things such as Zach Lavine paid Jim Boylen’s fine he received in-game when he was ejected. But on court and in interviews, you can see the dysfunction, like when the Bulls won a game and ignored their coach in the celebration. These bad relationships have also led to forward Thaddeus Young requesting a trade after less then one season with the team.
#4: Practice goes horribly
The dysfunction between Bulls players and Jim Boylen continues at practice. His first day, he was asking for more enthusiasm from his players, which is somewhat understandable. But having two hour practices happens not too often in the NBA, which Jim Boylen is doing consecutively with his players. Boylen’s practices are questionable, and he has his younger players running wind sprints and doing push-ups. Jim Boylen has deluded himself into thinking that old school practices will reveal the Bulls old school results, and he is horribly wrong. In fact, he is so old school that he makes players check into practice with a punch clock! A punch clock! This is 2020, not 1470! His refusal to transition to modern routines and practices leads to a lack of player respect, and a lack of wins. After his first win as a head coach against the Thunder, he celebrated and the next game they got blown out by 56 points. Oh, and let’s not forget another questionable discussion by Jim Boylen, when he did a 5 man sub in-game; twice. Zach Lavine was not too happy about that, and they are one of the most uncommon occurrences in the league. This clearly isn’t working, because before the season postponed, the Bulls were the 11th seed, and 22-43! Let that sink in for a second. In the weaker conference in the NBA, they’re behind the Hornets and Wizards. Which brings us to …
#3: He makes his team play an outdated version of basketball
Jim Boylen is literally deluding himself when he comes to game plan. He coaches like a coach who doesn’t have a three point line. He said in an interview before the season that the goal for his team was to average 35 assists! 35! That has never been done before, and won’t be done by this Bulls team. The assist average per year record is 27.4, and set by the Phoenix Suns, whose offense was 7 seconds or left. That is certainly not Jim Boylen’s offense, as he wants less threes taken. The Chicago Bulls have the 27th best offense in a league of 30 teams, and this can be pointed to one man: Jim Boylen. He emphasizes points in the paint, and not shooting as many threes. That’s a great strategy; for a 4th grade rec league team! The Bulls were the worst three point shooting team, in terms of attempts and makes before the season was postponed. Personally, this leads me to believe that Zach Lavine’s 13 three point performance against the Hornets was simply an act of defiance.
#2: He calls timeouts at horrible times
One of the weirdest things about Jim Boylen is that he calls timeouts at some of the worst times imaginable. And if you think I’m joking, I’m not, let’s look at some examples. On February 22nd, 2020, Jim Boylen called a timeout with 30 seconds left in the 4th quarter against the Phoenix Suns, and his team down 10. The cameras caught Zach Lavine expressing his frustration, saying to the coach, “Why are we calling a timeout down *expletive* 10?” Or how about March 2nd, 2020, when playing the Mavericks, Ryan Arcidiacono just made a lay-up, but it didn’t count because he called timeout before it? And then there’s the time when his team was down by 8 with 40 seconds left. A sane coach would have had his players shoot a 3 or at least score, and then foul or play tough defense. Instead, he wasted a timeout. And these are just a few examples.
And lastly, even worse, the Bulls management won’t see his flaws. This isn’t really his fault, but that of John Paxson. The man may have played for the Bulls, and been pretty good, but he isn’t the greatest as Senior Advisor of Basketball Operations. There are countless stories to back this up, such as Paxson choking Vinny Del Negro in an argument about how many minutes Joakim Noah played. Or when he fired Scott Skiles on Christmas Day, or when Tom Thibodeau locked himself in the coaches office to get away from him, or when he traded Jimmy Butler, or when he had rising star Spencer Dinwiddie in training camp and didn’t keep him, or the fact he is still, hating on Derrick Rose and his injuries, or… well you get the point.
So I’m really hoping for this young Bulls team, and I hope they can succeed. Even more importantly, I hope that the Bulls management fires him, and that the young core can develop and make the playoffs. What do you guys think? Do you think the Bulls can succeed with Jim Boylen, or do you think they should fire him. Let me know in the comments, and as always, have an awesome day.