Donovan thinks Bulls could use a little more Chicago toughness

  • Bulls coach Billy Donovan says playing with toughness is a trait he admires.

    Bulls coach Billy Donovan says playing with toughness is a trait he admires. Associated Press

Updated 2/5/2021 2:29 PM

Billy Donovan coached former Bulls center Joakim Noah in college at the University of Florida. Bulls fans loved Noah, and he loved them back, because he was such a hard-worker and gave so much effort on the court.

The early version of Donovan's Bulls -- good on offense, soft on defense -- doesn't really adhere to those principles. Donovan was asked if the Bulls need to fit into the style of the city.


"I don't think it's necessarily about the city," Donovan said. "Those are the things you have to do to win, I don't think there's any question about that. A city like Chicago, where it's built on toughness and physicality, there's a real work ethic and a strong work ethic, they want to see that modeled in the team

"But I also say that's what goes into winning. You have to do that. If I were out coaching, I don't know, Oregon or Montana, I'd still want my teams to be tough and physical and play hard and play together and share the ball and compete on both ends of the floor, absolutely."

The Bulls have been starting five players age 25 and younger, who have never been to the NBA playoffs. It's likely things will change as time passes.

And if there's ever an NBA expansion team in Montana, Phil Jackson would probably come out retirement to coach there. But that's beside the point.


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