Bulls name Billy Donovan new head coach

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CHICAGO – The Bulls have a new head coach.

Billy Donovan, 55, takes over the reins in Chicago after leading the Oklahoma City Thunder to five straight playoff appearances.

“We are very pleased to welcome Billy and his family to the Chicago Bulls. The success that he has sustained over the course of his coaching career puts him on a different level,” said Chicago Bulls Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Arturas Karnisovas.

Karnisovas said management thought Donovan would “mesh well” with the Bulls roster.

“Whether as a player or as a coach, he has won everywhere his career has taken him, and we hope that will continue here in Chicago,” Karnisovas said.

In a statement, Donovan thanked the Bulls front office while saying he is excited to work with Karnisovas, “on behalf of this historic franchise.”

Donovan announced two weeks ago he wouldn’t return as coach of the Oklahoma City Thunder after five seasons. He took the Thunder to the playoffs every year and was a finalist for Coach of the Year for the 2020 season after his squad outperformed expectations and pushed the Houston Rockets to seven games in the first round of the playoffs. 

Donovan went 243-157 with Oklahoma City. He was at the end of his contract and he and the team described his departure as a mutual decision.

Before his NBA stint, Donovan spent 19 years at the University of Florida, winning consecutive NCAA titles in 2006 and 2007 and making four Final Four appearances.

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