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NBA SCOWLEYS: Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau isn’t going anywhere

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau is pretty good spot. He is signed through 2016-17 has players who listen him. | AP

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau is in a pretty good spot. He is signed through 2016-17 and has players who listen to him. | AP

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Updated: January 16, 2014 6:37AM



MILWAUKEE — Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau isn’t going to leave for the Knicks any time soon.

He’s not going back to the Celtics, joining the Rockets or heading to any other team in need of an elite coach.

And why would he? He is signed through 2016-17 with the Bulls, has players who listen to him and, maybe most important, has an owner who sets the bar at championships.

Can you imagine Thibodeau having to deal with enigmatic Knicks owner James Dolan sticking his nose in personnel decisions?

Much like a shark is focused on his next meal, Thibodeau is focused on winning NBA games. That means being in an environment that allows that to happen.

Do Thibodeau and general manager Gar Forman have plans to go Christmas caroling any time soon? Doubtful. But their relationship is better than it has been portrayed nationally.

So is Thibodeau on his way out of Chicago? Stop it.

◆ Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni wants Pau Gasol to ‘‘play harder.’’ Why doesn’t D’Antoni start coaching better?

◆ Jim Brown 1, Kobe Bryant 0.

◆ Remember, LaMarcus Aldridge originally was drafted by the Bulls in 2006. Damn you, Tyrus Thomas!

◆ How long will it take for Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce to grow to dislike teammate Deron Williams? Too late.

Player of the week

Russell Westbrook, Thunder point guard: Westbrook seems to be getting back to his dominant self after a knee injury suffered in the playoffs last season. He averaged 22.3 points and 11 assists during a three-game winning streak that featured victories against the Grizzlies and Pacers.

Team of the week

Nets: Could there now be a third team emerging in the Eastern Conference? With
coach-killer Deron Williams back on the court, the Nets finally are playing up to expectations.

The big five

1. Pacers, 2. Heat, 3. Trail Blazers, 4. Spurs, 5. Thunder.

Awful for Andrew

The three teams bad enough to start tanking in hopes of drafting Kansas freshman Andrew Wiggins: 1. Jazz, 2. Bucks, 3. Kings.

Big number

5th — The Bobcats entered play Friday as the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference, which Bulls fans want to see. If the Bobcats finish out of the top 10 in the lottery, the Bulls can get their first-round pick in June or wait until the pick is unprotected in 2016.

Two to watch

Pacers at Heat, 6 p.m. Wednesday: It’s Round 2 of 11, with the venue switching to South Beach. The Pacers beat the Heat last week in Indianapolis.

Thunder at Spurs, 7:30 p.m. Saturday: Two of the big boys in the Western Conference go at it.

Email: jcowley@suntimes.com



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