John Paxson will no longer handle the day-to-day duties for the Chicago Bulls, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. He will still be involved in the major decisions of the team, and will keep his title of executive vice-president of basketball operations. This leads to more questions for the Bulls as they try to continue the momentum gained by taking the defending champion Boston Celtics to seven thrilling games in the first round of the playoffs.
What decisions does a GM make that aren't "major?" He is involved in who to draft, who to hire, which free agent to pursue, who to fire and who to cut. Those all seem like pretty major decisions within a team. What "minor" decisions is he involved in? Playing time? Offensive schemes? Man-to-man vs. zone? Regular home uniforms vs. alternate black jerseys? Paxson stepping down but still maintaining some control is a bit odd.
This may go back to some of the stuggles that happened within the Bulls management earlier in the season. In late January, when the Bulls were in a tailspin, Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf criticized the Bulls performance while still praising Paxson. A few weeks later, rumors swirled that Paxson was going to step down due to health concerns. Perhaps Paxson was just waiting for the Bulls' season to end.
The Bulls plan on having a press conference on Thursday to officially announce Paxson's departure. Hopefully, they will clear up the many questions that this odd departure has brought up.
Maggie Hendricks is a lifelong Chicagoan who has fond memories of attending Bulls' championship rallies and taking Michael Jordan for granted. She also writes for Cagewriter, Yahoo! Sports' MMA blog, and Fourth-Place Medal, Yahoo! Sports' Olympic blog.