Latest On Tom Thibodeau, Bulls, Magic

MONDAY, 8:32am: Johnson finds it difficult to envision Thibodeau leaving the Bulls if the choice is up to the coach, given the other options he had when he arrived in Chicago and his fondness for living there, among other reasons. Thibodeau has said publicly that he’s OK with merely having a say in personnel matters rather than full control, and he was a significant advocate of the draft-night trade for Doug McDermott last year, Johnson hears. As for the Magic, Hennigan will strongly consider Skiles and Mark Jackson for his coaching vacancy in Orlando, league sources tell Johnson.

FRIDAY, 2:58pm: Third parties connected to Tom Thibodeau have been exploring what his options would be if he and the Bulls were to part ways in the offseason, and the Magic are one of the teams they’ve investigated, Bleacher Report’s Ric Bucher says in a video report (hat tip to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune). Still, the Magic reportedly plan to seek an extension for GM Rob Hennigan, and CEO Alex Martins has spoken in glowing terms about the GM, raising questions about whether Thibodeau would want to head to Orlando, Bucher adds. The feeling around the league is that the Magic’s desire to extend Hennigan’s deal is a signal to candidates for its coaching position that they won’t get front-office control, according to Bucher.

Thibodeau’s rocky relationship with the Bulls front office is well-documented, and Johnson wrote earlier this season that it was “beyond repair,” though GM Gar Forman denies that kind of tension exists. Many people around the league wouldn’t be surprised to see Thibodeau, who’s under contract through 2016/17, and the Bulls mutually part ways this summer, Johnson wrote. Several league sources told Chris Mannix of in February, shortly after the team fired Jacque Vaughn, that they thought the Magic might pursue Thibodeau.

Interim coach James Borrego is one of several potential candidates for the Orlando job, though the team wants to hire an experienced hand, notes Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders (Twitter link). Scott Skiles, whom Kennedy reported the Magic would consider, remains in the mix, Johnson hears (Twitter link). Fellow Basketball Insiders scribe Steve Kyler heard from sources who suggested Skiles wouldn’t take the Magic job without personnel control, though Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel wrote that Skiles is indeed interested in the opening.

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