Bulls release statement after not making it to Orlando return
The Chicago Bulls‘ season is officially over.
The NBA’s board of governors approved a return-to-play plan on Thursday, with 22 teams heading to Orlando. Nine of those teams hail from the Eastern Conference. But the Bulls, who were 11th in the East prior to the suspension of play, did not make the cut.
Bulls President and COO Michael Reinsdorf issued a statement to the fan base on Thursday evening, stating he was “disappointed” not to be playing more games this year.
— Eric Woodyard (@E_Woodyard) June 4, 2020
However, as Reinsdorf also stated, the team felt the need to compromise and acknowledge play must go on as the NBA finally has a path to concluding the 2019-20 season.
The Bulls finish the season with a 22-43 mark. They were eight games back of the Orlando Magic for the eighth and final playoff spot when play was suspended.
The Washington Wizards will head to Orlando as the ninth and final team in the East. Though Chicago was closer to that ninth spot, it was still 2.5 games back of Washington.
This season will ultimately be regarded as a disappointment by Bulls fans. The organization began the year with playoff expectations, but a slew of injuries and gripes with head coach Jim Boylen impeded the progress of young players like Lauri Markkanen and Wendell Carter Jr.
But the Bulls are also transitioning to a new era. John Paxson and Gar Forman are out as the lead executives in Chicago, replaced by former Denver Nuggets GM Arturas Karnisovas.
There are still questions as to whether Karnisovas will elect to keep Boylen or fire him and move forward with his own head coach.
In any case, Reinsdorf will hope Karnisovas can help revitalize the franchise as a winner.