Word on the Street: Jerry Sloan resigns from Jazz


Word on the Street: Jerry Sloan resigns from Jazz

Thursday, Feb. 10, 2011

Jerry Sloan to resign

Reportersknew something was off when after Wednesday night's loss to the Bulls,Jazz head coach Jerry Sloan, who usually comes out to speak to thepress within 10 minutes, stayed in the locker room for 45 minutes in ameeting with Utah general manager Kevin O'Connor.

When Sloanfinally did emerge, he simply said that he had talked to O'Connor andthat they would provide more information on Thursday.

One day later, sources are now saying that Sloan and his assistant coach Phil Johnson is expected to resignat a news conference this afternoon. Sloan, who has coached the Jazzsince 1988, is currently the longest tenured coach in all ofprofessional sports. (KSL.com)

Rockets seeking Bulls' Asik

Could Omer Asik be leaving the Bulls? K.C. Johnson reports that the Houston Rockets are asking for the rookie center in their exploratory talks regarding shooting gaurd Courtney Lee.

The Bulls have scouted Lee extensively, as he is a favorite of the Bulls coaching staff. Management has given no indications it plans to trade Asik, who is valued by the Bulls staff. (Chicago Breaking Sports)

Buehrle on Vick: "We hope he gets hurt"

Mark Buehrle created a stir on Wednesday when, in an interview with MLB.com regarding his charitable work with animals, he made some disparaging comments about Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick.

"He had a great year and a great comeback, but there were times where my wife and I watched the game and I know it's bad to say, but there were times where we hope he gets hurt. Everything you've done to these dogs, something bad needs to happen to these guys," said Buehrle in the interview.

Though the quote has since been removed from the article, the controversy is likely to remain. (USA Today)

NFL labor talks halted

NFL labor negotiations took a turn for the worst on Thursday when the second day of a two-day bargaining session was canceled. The cancellation was reportedly due to the fact that the two sides were too far apart, a decision the NFL Players Association spokesman George Atallah was unhappy with.

"We wish we were negotiating today," Atallah said. "That's all I can say." (ChicagoBreakingSports)

Fire release Umanzor
The Chicago Fire announced on Wednesday that they had released Salvadorian defender Deris Umanzor. Umanzor, 31, started only five games in his first season with the Fire in 2010, and appeared in only 10 overall.

"We want to thank Deris for his contributions to the Chicago Fire and wish him the best in the next step of his career," said Fire Technical Director Frank Klopas. (Goal.com)

Fast Break Morning Update: Bulls gearing up for realistic run at the postseason

Fast Break Morning Update: Bulls gearing up for realistic run at the postseason

Today on CSN: White Sox continue spring training slate against Padres

Jimmy Butler, Bulls prep for stretch run with realistic eye on the postseason

Bears believe they got more than just a No. 2 QB in signing Mark Sanchez

Carlos Rodon headed to the disabled list, will start throwing program

Is Addison Russell still on track for Opening Night?

Nikola Mirotic reflects on pump fakes, maddening March, future in Chicago

Tanner Kero latest to try and fill Artem Anisimov's skates


No Bears move yet on CB Deiondre' Hall except maybe to safety

Cubs release Munenori Kawasaki and keep the door open for his return

Kristin Cavallari shows off her favorite NFL tight end: A nude Jay Cutler

Nikola Mirotic reflects on pump fakes, maddening March, future in Chicago

Nikola Mirotic reflects on pump fakes, maddening March, future in Chicago

If there's a more maddening player in the Eastern Conference than Nikola Mirotic, that player's psychologist should be getting paid double considering Bulls fans have been talking to themselves about Mirotic so much over the past three years.

And as they've reached no conclusion on Mirotic, along with many other sage minds, only one thing is for certain: March is his month.

Meaning it's the month where it becomes maddening to watch him play and probably equally as maddening for his teammates who've watched his inconsistencies for the better part of four months or so.

Averaging 16.0 points and 5.9 rebounds in 41 career March games, it's the only full month where Mirotic averages in double figures for his career—meaning there's a lot of inconsistencies to wade through to get to the proverbial pot of gold.

In 2014-15, he emerged as the NBA's best fourth-quarter scorer that month when the Bulls were without both Derrick Rose and Jimmy Butler. Last season, he came back fresh after an appendectomy took a big chunk of his year.

This year, there's no big macro reason. He's just playing definitively, making quick movements and it's paying off as his two best scoring games took place within a four-day span (28 against both Detroit and Milwaukee).

"Right now, you see I'm shooting without hesitation," Mirotic said to CSNChicago.com. "Just catch and shooting. It's a great feeling."

No word on whether Mirotic hears the fans in the arena or the twitterverse screaming for him to ditch the pump fake that he actually admits it got in his head, but this season has been a roller coaster of the most dramatic kind, as the Bulls are still vying for playoff positioning with eight games remaining in the regular season.

"Sometimes, especially when I'm reading you guys (media), Niko pump fake, pump fake," Mirotic said with a smile. "Okay, no more pump fakes, just fire that ball. I'm laughing because you guys are (right)…that's true. You guys want me to shoot. It doesn't look good when you pump fake every time you have a wide-open shot."

Being penciled in as a training camp starter due to the need for floor spacing, Taj Gibson quickly outplayed Mirotic for the power forward spot. Then Mirotic's up and down, down and up, season began.

Kind of like his pump fake that often drew more defensive attention for it's predictability than effectiveness, stability has been hard to find for a player many have been waiting on since the day he was drafted in 2011.

"I know the defenses are ready for my pump fake so now just like, shoot the ball," Mirotic said. "I've been spending a lot of hours working on my shot before practice, after practice, trying to catch the feeling."

Better late than never or too late?

That's the question surrounding Mirotic and he knows it, being aware of his status as a restricted free-agent-to-be, along with his trade value a month ago being so low, the Bulls could only get a future second-round pick for him from teams.

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With the Bulls having so many questions going into the future, who knows if they want to go through the up-and-down, down-and-up cycle with a talented player yet again, with a big-time financial commitment.

In a sense, Mirotic knows he's left plenty on the table as far as his play through the years and seems to be content with playing with a sense of freedom as the season concludes, whether he's back with the Bulls or not for next year and beyond.

"I just wanna leave a good impression for the Bulls," Mirotic said. "Whatever decision they make. It's been a pleasure. A lot of people dream to be here, I was one of those guys when I was in Europe. I was really like, I wanna go there and play for the Bulls. The history they have. For me, it's a dream come true. Whatever decision they make, I make, whatever. I don't know. The years here have been great. I know it's been up and down. It's been a pleasure and I just wanna finish right."