The Chicago Bulls have agreed to a deal with Billy Donovan to become their next head coach. For the first time in years, the Bulls will have a competent head coach in charge, which is a major change for the franchise. It's also a great fit for both parties.
Donovan comes to the Bulls after they've spent years floundering under Fred Hoiberg and Jim Boylen. The Tom Thibodeau era wasn't exactly a smooth few years either. While Thibodeau reached the playoffs every year of his tenure, the Bulls never reached their potential under his leadership and there seemed to be constant drama behind the scenes.
Donovan has the coaching chops to win on the court and his tenure in Oklahoma City was relatively drama-free. The Thunder reached the postseason in each of his five seasons, but suffered first round exits in the last four campaigns. Though I'm not sure you can blame Donovan for those early exits, the rosters he's had to deal with were pretty awful.
Still, in five seasons he posted a 243-157 (.608) record and, of course, guided the Kevin Durant-Russell Westbrook led Thunder to the Western Conference Finals in 2016. They lost to the Golden State Warriors in seven games, then Durant bolted for Golden State after the season. That move left a mess in OKC that Donovan had to deal with.
The Bulls need someone to steady their ship after a rocky few years under Boylen. Donovan will undoubtedly do that. He'll also have plenty of young talent to mold, with Zach LaVine, Lauri Markkanen, Coby White and Wendell Carter Jr. all under the age of 25. The Bulls also possess the fourth pick in the 2020 NBA Draft to add to that core.
When Donovan took the Oklahoma City job, he entered a situation with established stars and had to work to their strengths. Given that he was coming off of being a wildly-successful college coach, that had to have been a difficult transition. The Bulls will almost certainly be more like a college team that needs molding and guidance, which is something that fits his strengths.
Given the age of Chicago's roster and the fact that the franchise is in the midst of a rebuild, Donovan is a great hire.