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Report: Fred Hoiberg lost control of Bulls, including Zach LaVine, who could do whatever he wanted

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Early in his tenure as Bulls coach, Fred Hoiberg had problems with Jimmy Butler and Joakim Noah. But Butler and Noah were stubborn veterans entrenched in their ways. The thinking was Hoiberg would connect better with less-proven, more-impressionable players.

Yet, it seems Hoiberg – whom Chicago fired this week – had interpersonal problems with this younger roster, too.

Darnell Mayberry of The Athletic:

Multiple league sources said Hoiberg had lost the team, saying players no longer believed in his system and became increasingly emboldened in undermining Hoiberg’s authority.

what could Zach LaVine pull?

The answer is anything he wanted, according to a team source who said LaVine was given carte blanche by Hoiberg. Internally, there was concern players would revolt more as the season marched on

Most publicly, LaVine waved off Hoiberg’s play call in the final moments of a loss last week. Mayberry also detailed instances of Jabari Parker and Antonio Blakeney showing up Hoiberg.

Did Hoiberg have control of the locker room? Lauri Markkanen‘s response seems telling.

Rick Tarsitano‏ of WGN

There is no one right temperament for coaching in the NBA. Coaches have succeeded and failed with varying styles.

But it seems Hoiberg never found his footing. By most accounts, he’s a nice guy. But it also seemed he tried too hard to bend his personality to what he thought an NBA coach should be – and that came across as fake.

His biggest issue: He didn’t win. Players want coaches who help them flourish on the court (which comes with more money, etc.). Hoiberg never demonstrated he could be that coach.

Add his mild-mannered nature, and it was hard for him to command respect.

PBT Podcast: Getting on NBA teams’ draft radar through Professional Basketball Combine

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Most of the NBA Draft focus right now is on the handful of guys at the top of the draft — Deandre Ayton, Marvin Bagley III, Luka Doncic, and others.

However, at any given time up to 20 percent of the guys in the league were undrafted — guys such as Robert Covington, Jeremy Lin, Seth Curry, Aron Baynes, Wes Mathews, and Kent Bazemore, all went undrafted and had to find another route to the NBA.

How do those guys get the attention of scouts and GMs and get their chance? Jake Kelfer with the Professional Basketball Combine joins me to talk about his event and that path — a May combine-style couple of days where teams can watch players not at the NBA Combine — and how those players can get a foot in the door. Last year, that included Antonio Blakeney, who got a two-way contract with the Bulls, Charles Cooke (who got a two-way contract with the Pelicans) and others who went on to play in the G-League and overseas. The goal at the combine is to play well enough to get invited to work out for teams (from there it’s usually a Summer League invite and maybe the chance to attend a team’s training camp, where they can earn a spot).

This year, the list of players includes LiAngelo Ball, who will be coming to the PBC at the IMG Academy in Florida trying to show to scouts exactly what he can do.

As always, you can check out the podcast below, listen and subscribe via iTunes at ApplePodcasts.com/PBTonNBC, subscribe via the fantastic Stitcher app, check us out on Google play, or check out the NBC Sports Podcast homepage and archive at Art19.