The Bulls have been sorta somewhat OK so far this season. With 5 wins and 7 losses they have the potential to improve a bit and eventually become a .500 squad, which by their recent standards would be a big success. The Bulls bright spot in 2008-09 has been the great play of rookie point guard Derrick Rose, who has star quality.

Former Bulls coach Scott Skiles has a reputation of saying whatever is on his mind, which from a media and fan standpoint is terrific, because he creates lots of good conversation thanks to blunt honesty. That’s no longer the case with the team’s new coach, however. The Arlington Heights Daily Herald (Mike McGraw) reports:

Vinny Del Negro has demonstrated one constant, sometimes maddening, behavior so far this season. The first-year Bulls coach absolutely refuses to criticize his players in the media. This is quite a change from Scott Skiles, who was brutally honest when describing the state of the team. One often-repeated story is Skiles’ response when asked what Eddy Curry could do to improve his rebounding numbers. “Jump,” was the reply. Of course, some of Skiles’ comments helped escalate the turmoil last season when the Bulls went in the tank. He probably figured he was on the way out when he offered the “Tyrus Thomas has never run the floor once” rant during last year’s circus road trip… Del Negro will talk about what the team as a whole needs to do better. But when asked about poor individual performances, the coach tends to point the finger at himself.

I remember one day in New York when Eddy Curry was a fairly new member of the Knicks, and local NY reporters were trying to get coach Skiles to say something positive about the big center. Skiles wouldn’t bite. I thought that was terrific. More coaches need to be like him and Warriors coach Don Nelson in the “tell it like it is” department.

–Jeff