Tom Thibodeau saw his best player suffer a second season-ending injury (Derrick Rose) and his second-best player traded away in the same division (Luol Deng; Cavaliers). Still, the Bulls are 21-20, have won eight of the last 10 and sit in the No. 5 seed in the woefully bad Eastern Conference. Despite nagging injuries to Jimmy Butler, Carlos Boozer, Kirk Hinrich and, in preseason, Joakim Noah, the former NBA Coach of the Year has kept his team afloat and in playoff contention for a fourth straight season.
That prompted the SportsTalk Live panel to debate: is this Thibodeau's best year coaching the Bulls?
In his first season he was named the NBA's Coach of the Year and tutored league MVP Derrick Rose; the Bulls tied the NBA lead for wins (50) in the 2011-12 lockout season and the Bulls won 45 games while dealing with the media circus created by Rose missing the season in 2012-13.
"Ask that question again at the end of the regular season," The Score's David Schuster said. "But right now they're on a really good roll."
David Kaplan, who posed the original question, thinks this year has been Thibodeau's best yet, that the Bulls head coach is using the front office's decision to trade Deng as motivation for his team to succeed.
Watch the video above for the entire debate.