Jerry Krause died last week, which predictably fostered widespread praise. Death has a way of enhancing someone’s reputation.
Now, the former Bulls general manager who was unfortunately under-appreciated in life will receive basketball’s highest honor.
K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune:
Krause built excellent supporting casts — including Scottie Pippen, Horace Grant, John Paxson, B. J. Armstrong, Bill Cartwright, Ron Harper, Dennis Rodman, Toni Kukoc, Luc Longley and Steve Kerr — around Michael Jordan. That combination helped Chicago win six championships in the 90s.
Could Krause have done it without Jordan, whom the Bulls drafted before Krause took over? No way.
But could Jordan have done it without Krause? Maybe not.
As Krause infamously said, organizations win championships. He wasn’t the most important piece to Chicago’s titles. He wasn’t always well-liked by Jordan and other players, and their popularity turned the public against Krause.
But Krause was integral to those titles, and anyone who plays such a key role in six championships belongs in the Hall of Fame — and that has qualified Krause for more than a decade. The only shame is that he’s not around to enjoy his enshrinement.