Paxson: Bulls GM Gar Forman Is ‘Absolutely Safe’

While the Bulls fired head coach Fred Hoiberg today, they don’t expect to part ways with general manager Gar Forman anytime soon, according to executive VP of basketball operations John Paxson.

As K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune relays, Paxson issued a strong defense of Forman today, telling reporters that the GM is “absolutely safe” in his current role, a stance that sources confirmed privately to Johnson. Paxson also dismissed the idea that Hoiberg’s initial hiring was all on Forman.

“First of all, the belief that Gar solely made that decision was wrong and always has been,” Paxson said. “Those are reports. We can’t battle everything. I was 100% on board with hiring Fred. Jerry (Reinsdorf) and Michael (Reinsdorf) were 100% on board with hiring Fred. I work with Gar every day. I understand his internal value to this organization.”

Paxson technically sits above Forman in Chicago’s basketball operations hierarchy, but the general manager has a significant voice in roster moves and coaching hires, with Paxson indicating today that the two executives work in tandem and “make decisions together.” Those coaching and personnel decisions have been hit-and-miss for the Bulls in recent years, and Forman has also faced criticism for not speaking more to reporters, which Paxson addressed this afternoon with Forman unavailable for comment.

“I’m the person who will stand up in front and talk about why we do certain things. That’s just the way it is,” Paxson said. “It’s not that he’s not talking because he doesn’t want to. It’s because I choose to speak for this organization. And I feel passionately about his role with us.

“We’ve made some great decisions in terms of young personnel the last couple years,” Paxson continued. “And as we have the opportunity to make more decisions, he’ll be front and center. We’ll work in tandem and we hope to do the right thing.”

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18 thoughts on “Paxson: Bulls GM Gar Forman Is ‘Absolutely Safe’

  1. I give no fox

    I get that a lot of bulls fans hate this duo, but I am curious to know why? I think the bulls robbed the wolves in the jimmy butler trade, they looks pretty successful in the last few drafts, the roster doesn’t have any albatross contracts. With a solid young core and financial flexibility, the bulls on paper look like an attractive destination

    • chiefivey

      theyve done decent w. the rebuild, but draft misses, lack of timely trades & lack of ability to secure top free agents for one of the biggest markets in the country are the main reasons.

    • TrueOutcomeFan

      I get what you’re saying, but look at how they handled Omer Asik. Why should I, as a fan, have any confidence in that duo to put together a quality on court product when they can’t even get a basic front office move right?

    • LordBanana

      Butler not working out for the Timberwolves doesn’t mean the return the Bulls got is somehow better.

        • LordBanana

          The outcome for the other side is irrelevant, what matters is the outcome for the Bulls.
          If they traded Butler for a bag of potatoes and he get injured and retires the next day it doesn’t suddenly make it a good deal.

          • ChiSoxCity

            Ok then, what’s your opinion of the players sent to the Bulls? Are you saying they weren’t worth giving up Butler?

            • yoyo137

              No, they are just saying that Butler’s performance in Philadelphia doesn’t change what the Bulls got in the trade. Lauri Markannen, Kris Dunn, and Zach LaVine don’t suddenly become better because Butler’s stats are down.

    • Djones246890

      The only reason it appears as though they actually care about winning, now, is that the fans have been giving them h e l l for the last few years.

      Forman is also huge on crony hires, especially ones from Iowa. And Iowa doesn’t have talent. Hoiberg is from Iowa, and Gar bought his house.

      Forman also gave Hoiberg the 5 year contract. I mean, honestly, who gives a rookie coach a 5 year contract?? Crazy.

      Forman has essentially been neutered, the past few years, and now Paxson is basically calling all shots.

      Paxson isn’t horrible, but Gar is. He’s clueless. And unfortunately there’s just no accountability in a Reinsdorf-run team.

  2. ChiSoxCity

    I could write a book on why GarPax deserves to be fired. What it basically boils down to is the Bulls front office lacks the creativity, vision, and will, to put enough talent on the court to win a championship. They’ve had numerous windows of opportunities, and have blown them all with either dumb decisions, or even worse, no decisions at all. Stagnant, stunted, boring, outdated: these are words that come to wind when I think about J.R. and his executives.

  3. Richard Hangslow

    Traded Rose, Butler, Gibson in separate deals and received ZERO draft picks back. Let Gasol walk when he told them he was coming back. Trade 2 picks to get Doug McDermott (those picks, Gary Harris & Jusuf Nurkic) just to name a few.

  4. chicity312

    What absolute joke|Bulls Sellout every night but can’t be rewarded with a winning product now watch how successful Hoiberg is back in College when he can actually recruit what he needs

    Paxson hit a wide open 3 as a role player does not mean he know basketball cause he has a Championship Ring And Foreman is a Mere Yes Sir Ok Sir

  5. x%sure

    Bulls are tied for last now, and only half a game ahead of Suns overall. They have more talent than this. I do not think they had any tanking plans. Might as well now though!

    Virtues aside, I can see Hoiberg not being a fit there. The atmosphere in Chicago probably better suits a Thibs type.

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