I am actually writing this article while watching the Chicago Bulls play the Atlanta Hawks. Keeping my mind occupied on this, keeps me from getting excited that the Bulls may win, only to get disappointed again.
I went into this season with optimism not felt in years. Like many Bulls believers, I anticipated that the heralded young core of players will finally blossom into a team that will attract top free agents.
Now, at 2-6 and having blown every fourth quarter lead under the sun, fans and social media are nothing less than angry. That includes me. No more mister nice guy here.
Previously, I had endorsed Jim Boylen and supported owner Jerry Reinsdorf. But after last nights loss to the Lakers, the honeymoon is officially over.
Not only that, but I will tell you what I truly believe in this angry state of mind. In my humble opinion, Jerry Reinsdorf’s strategic financial plan right now is to fund the White Sox rebuild with profits he makes off the Bulls.
Peter Gammons wrote back in 2000, Jerry once said, he’d “trade all his Bulls championship rings for one World Series ring. Sure, he may have been joking”. But there is truth is every jest.And
The Bulls led the league in attendance for 9 straight years before last season. Forbes Magazine calculated this past year that the team is now worth $2.9 billion. That makes them the NBA’s fourth-most valuable franchise for the second consecutive year.
The White Sox, on the other hand, average about $20,000 fans a game last year, compared to over 38,000 for the Cubs. They have played the last few years in the shadow of the North Sider’s 2016 championship.
Yes, it’s business and Reinsdorf sees both teams as one business with two profit centers.
The White Sox have a young core and chance to do something special. Reinsdorf wants to seize the opportunity. He will get the money he needs through the proceeds earned through the loyal Bulls fan base.
Why do you think Michael Jordan was allowed to play for the White Sox? Jerry owed him. Jerry’s Bulls could not have funded Jerry’s childhood dream all these years without Michael. MJ provided Reinsdorf with a global brand to feed the White Sox profit center.
In my opinion, an NBA owner who has alternative motives to winning an NBA championship should not own an NBA team. Even more so, if he doesn’t invest heavily in free agents this winter to bolster the White Sox, he has no right owning any sports team.