Calling his relationship with Doug Collins “really good,” Jim Boylen disputed an NBC Sports Chicago report that he and the Bulls’ senior adviser had had a falling out recently.
“Doug doesn’t work for me. He was hired by ownership and management. All my interaction with Doug has been very positive. He’s been in my meetings and on the floor with the team,” Boylen said. “I don’t control his schedule or if he’s here or not here. We’ve had a very good, close relationship since he’s been here.”
Boylen admitted that “it’s been awhile” since he spoke with Collins, who moved into the background following the incident. That was an organizational decision, and it should be noted that Boylen, as previously reported, has been very accommodating to Collins, who was hired by executive vice president John Paxson. Boylen routinely included Collins in coaches’ meetings and made clear to players Collins’ experience and past accomplishments.
The incident occurred when Collins offered strong opinions at an organizational meeting in a manner that rankled some people. Multiple sources continued to corroborate the original report.
Boylen long has sought to create an inclusive atmosphere, keeping strong lines of communication open with ownership, Paxson and general manager Gar Forman. He is open to input from a wide variety of people.
Collins, who always has worn his emotions on his sleeve, has a strong personality and was hired to offer his unvarnished opinions when asked. Sometimes, those can rub people the wrong way.
Collins and Boylen share a common goal of wanting the Bulls to win, which is where Boylen’s focus is.
“My job is to focus on this group of guys getting better, from the last guy to the first guy,” Boylen said.