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Tom Thibodeau calls Lakers’ quick hook on Mike Brown ‘unfortunate’

Rookie Marquis Teague drives hoop against Andrei Kirilenko (47) Alexey Shved during Bulls’ 87-80 victory. | Scott Stewart~Sun-Times

Rookie Marquis Teague drives to the hoop against Andrei Kirilenko (47) and Alexey Shved during the Bulls’ 87-80 victory. | Scott Stewart~Sun-Times

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Updated: December 12, 2012 6:50AM



Not that Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau has to worry about getting fired anytime soon, but the news that the Los Angles Lakers canned coach Mike Brown after five games was another reminder for Thibodeau on how fragile these jobs are in the NBA.

“It’s unfortunate,’’ Thibodeau said on Saturday. “It’s one of the tough parts about the business. Mike is a heck of a guy and a great coach, so it’s disappointing, but I guess that’s the way it is.

“Five games into the season, a lot of new guys? It’s unfortunate. Disappointing.’’

As far as the rumors coming out of Los Angeles that Phil Jackson — who coached the Bulls to six titles — would be brought back, Thibodeau said that there was very little in this game that surprised him at this point.

“Nothing would surprise me,’’ he said. “Certainly [Jackson’s] got a proven track record for sure. You hate to see [when this] happens, but there are a lot of good coaches out there, too.’’

Baby steps

Center Joakim Noah definitely has played like an All-Star so far, especially in an Eastern Conference in which big men are few and far between. And while Thibodeau acknowledges that Noah’s start is as good as he’s maybe ever had, he doesn’t want Noah’s mind wandering ahead to February and the All-Star Game.

“I don’t even want him to get wrapped up in that type of thinking,’’ Thibodeau said. “I want him to think about how he can improve and how he can help us win. That stuff comes after you’ve done it for a while, so I like the path he’s on and I want him to keep working and improving. Take it day by day. I don’t want him thinking about the wrong things.’’

Around the rim

After playing big minutes throughout the preseason, backup center Nazr Mohammed has averaged 6.4 minutes per game in the regular season. Thibodeau wasn’t concerned, explaining that it had to do more with matchups, rather than anything Mohammed did or didn’t do.

◆ Timberwolves starting guard Brandon Roy was on the shelf, fighting through a sore knee. He was replaced in the lineup by Chase Budinger.



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