Monday, January 23, 2012

Tom Thibodeau Responds To His Critics

OHHHHH. It must suck not being the head coach of the Bulls. I wouldn't know anything about that though.

It's come to my attention that a few Backers -- Boggers --Blockers --Bloggers? Bloggers? Is that how you say it? It's come to my attention that a few BLOGGERS have a problem with the way I've been running my team. MY team. Now look, I understand what it's like to be angry. I watched guys like Vinny Del Negro land head coaching jobs while I was stuck masturbating in the film room at 4 in the morning. Doc preached his ubuntu shit and hid fake hundred dollar bills in EVERY away stadium and the media loved him for it. I drew up the defenses anonymously. Do you have any idea what it's like to draw up a defensive game plan for the Lakers? Try to imagine willingly putting your foot in a crocodile's mouth, looking that crocodile in the eye as he lets your foot rest gently in the back of his throat, and then just sit there as he starts to nibble on your big toe nice and slow. Then the crocodile gets bored and offers your foot back. You want to run but you put it right back in there because that's what you have to do. The crocodile is having a little trouble biting down properly and then Ron Artest comes out of nowhere and hits a fucking three. All the sleepless nights, the shitty eating habits, the premature balding, and past success come to the forefront of your mind as you realize: There was nothing I could have done to prepare for that.

I was always a bit of an obsessive as a kid. I memorized numbers, particularly the years movies were released. The Sting - 1973. The Graduate - 1967. Scarface - 1983, the original version was 1932. Ask me any movie, I know it. Why do I tell you this, you ask? see...sometimes I get sidetracked and before I know it I'm revealing embarrassing things about myself. You know, I treat basketball like I used to treat those movies. The finished product; title, release date, etc. was the important thing. I wasn't at all concerned about the actors. A good director takes what actors he's given and makes a hell of a movie. Sometimes his focus on a scene becomes so intense he forgets that one of the actors should not have been in the scene. Then by the time he yells, "Cut!" he hasn't the time or the money to go back and redo it. So the scene is filmed and it's already the end of the third quarter and I realize Derrick has played every minute of the game on a bum toe. Do you see what I'm saying? Work with me here. I'm not the best at conveying my thoughts.

My mother used to worry about me when I was seven years old. "Play outside," she said. "Your brain will turn to mush sitting in front of the television all day." I had no friends. Just a basketball, a ripped pair of jeans and perfectly respectable crew cut. I dribbled that ball -- boy did I dribble. I dribbled and dribbled and dribbled and I still wasn't any good. I used to bounce the ball off my foot and send it flying down the street. I ran after that ball and when I caught up to it I would start dribbling again. Inevitably, the ball would bounce off my foot again and I'd keep running for it. This WAS basketball to me. Lots of running. Constant motion. I loved the way the sweat trickled down my forehead and into my eyes. It stung. I enjoyed the pain. The pain was intense and good for me because I needed a different sort of pain to compensate for my lack of friends. I found running around all day with a basketball more than sufficient.

A couple years later, my mother became even more worried. "I'm worried you're going to kill someone, Tommy. I should have you committed." For Christmas that year I received a magnifying glass from my eccentric uncle. He told me, "Fame is a magnifying glass." I didn't understand the quote or its significance at the time, but I did enjoy the grotesque beauty of my magnified penis. The magnifying glass became my new companion. I took it outside with me, and, to my mother's dismay, dug around the garden. "That's not a garden hoe, Tommy," she yelled out the window. I pouted and stuck my tongue out at her and made my way to the front of the house. As fate would have it, another boy about my age, a boy I had never seen in my life, was riding his bike. He spotted my magnifying glass. His eyes lit up. "Cool," is all he could say.

This boy, Dennis was his name, showed me what magnifying glasses were really used for. We sat Indian style on the sidewalk and watched the ants go by. Dennis raised my magnifying glass to the sun. I watched as the sun beams reflected through the glass onto the pitiful creature. The ant, I thought, was dancing. What a fun time. "NO," Dennis said. "He's dying. We're KILLING this ant." My eyes lit up this time. Was that much control possible? Could I really impose my will on the universe? I watched as the ant withered and crumbled into the sidewalk. It was dead all right. We had ran it into the ground. I smiled bigger than when I received the Bulls coaching job. I couldn't stop smiling. My mother scheduled a psychiatrist appointment for me that day.

Running after basketballs for hours on end and accelerating the deaths of small, harmless animals were my childhood hobbies. Take from that what you will. Just know, I am always prepared. I will never let a Ron Artest situation happen again. Psychiatrists are not to be thanked. They bring to light all of your personal inadequacies, and worst of all, they make YOU tell them. Sure, I would love to carry you to the finish line only to have you hop off my back and break the tape yourself. I'm in control now. This is MY team made in MY image. They like playing through injuries because playing through injuries is what basketball players do.

Write your blogs and air your grievances. Last year it was Keith Bogans. This year it's playing time. Next year it will be something else. I'm trying to see where ya'll are coming from but the light reflecting off of my Coach of the Year trophy is a bit blinding. See you in June, suckas.          

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