From the very first day he took over for Fred Hoiberg as the head coach of the Chicago Bulls, Jim Boylen has been all business.
Despite some early adversity — like scheduling a practice after a back-to-back and nearly invoking a player mutiny — and battling it out with the media, Boylen has managed to gain the respect of his players, which is a good sign given that management has seemingly made it clear that he would be back as head coach next season.
Boylen has even gone toe-to-toe with Doc Rivers in one of the first-ever simultaneous coaching ejections in NBA history.
With the Bulls running out a bunch of different lineups at the end of the season due to injuries, Boylen is employing this same no-nonsense approach when coaching all these non-regulars who have now been thrust into his rotations.
Boylen explained his attitude to Darnell Mayberry of The Athletic:
Finally, I loved this answer from Boylen when he was asked about his personal challenge of coaching so many non-regulars. “I can’t be different than I’m asking them to be,” Boylen said. “I talk about when they step on the floor, no matter where you’re from, how much money you make, whatever it is, you’ve got to compete. Well, I’ve got to be the same way. Or else I’m a bullshit guy. I’m not going to do that.”
Zach LaVine, Lauri Markkanen, Otto Porter Jr. and Kris Dunn have all been out for a while now. Instead, the Bulls have focused on getting some looks at players like JaKarr Sampson and Walter Lemon Jr.