But that’s not all it will take to lure Thibodeau to Orlando, even if he’s interested.
Apparently, the Magic are willing to do the rest.
Sources close to the situation say not only would the Magic give the Bulls compensation (likely a second-round pick or two) for the chance to get at Thibodeau, sources also said the Magic would meet the expected $7-8 million per year coaching salary Thibodeau likely commands in his next deal.
The Nets got two second-rounders from the Bucks for Jason Kidd. The Celtics got a first-rounder from the Clippers for Doc Rivers. The Heat got a second rounder and the right to swap lottery-protected first-rounders (or another second rounder/other compensation) from the Magic for Stan Van Gundy.
Obviously, each situation is different, but two second-rounders for Thibodeau sounds somewhere between right and too favorable for Orlando.
Rivers drew a first-round pick, but the Clippers were expected to pick late in the first round. The Magic, even with Thibodeau, probably won’t be as likely to pick in the 20s.
In addition to their lottery pick, the Magic have the No. 51 pick in the upcoming draft (coincidentally from Chicago), though they traded their own 2015 second-rounder. They also have a 2016 second-rounder via the Bulls (the higher of Chicago’s and Portland’s) and a future first-rounder from the Lakers.
Even though Chicago might want to dump Thibodeau, he still has two years remaining on his contract after this one. He’s one of the league’s top coaches, and maybe the Bulls threaten to grit it out with him if they don’t get a satisfactory offer. After all, these rumors of discord are not new, and they’ve kept Thibodeau thus far.
Not only do the Magic have to appease Chicago, they also must sell Thibodeau. He might seek front-office control – even if it’s just to protect himself from meddling and getting fired – but Orlando just extended general manager Rob Hennigan’s contract. A salary of $7 million-$8 million would put Thibodeau in the NBA’s upper echelon (where he belongs), though decidedly behind the Spurs’ Gregg Popovich.
It seems the Magic are serious about making this work. Thibodeau-to-Orlando might not happen, but it’s more than just a pipedream.