If Tom Thibodeau has coached his last game with the Bulls, as season-long rumors suggest, nobody has broken the news to him.
Following Thursday's season-ending loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals, Thibodeau was asked if he expects to be back with the Bulls next season.
“Until they tell me I’m not, I expect to be here,” Thibodeau said.
Dating back to last year, reports surfaced of a rift between Thibodeau and the Bulls' front office. Thibodeau, the NBA Coach of the Year in 2011, has two years and nearly $9 million left on his current contract with the Bulls.
[MORE BULLS: Lifeless Bulls fall to Cavaliers in series-clincher]
And the likelihood of the 57-year-old Thibodeau on the bench with a different team next fall appears to be very high, according to ESPN's Mark Stein.
As one source close to the situation puts it: "Thibs is gone. They know it and he knows it."
Both the New Orleans Pelicans and Orlando Magic are expected to be leading suitors for Thibodeau's services. If the Bull don't fire Thibodeau outright, they could try to work out a trade with another club. The last NBA coach to be dealt was back in 2013 when the Boston Celtics sent Doc Rivers to the Boston Celtics for an unprotected 2015 first round draft selection, which will likely be the type of compensation the Bulls will be seeking in any trade of Thibodeau.
[SHOP: Gear up, Bulls fans!]
If Thibodeau isn't back in Chicago next season, it won't be because the lack of support from his players.
“Me and Thibs really grew a relationship,” Derrick Rose said. "I don't mind him as a coach."
Added Taj Gibson: "I'm a big Tom Thibodeau supporter. Everybody in this locker room has gotten better from just being around him the last couple years."
For more reaction and discussion on Thibodeau's uncertain future in Chicago check out the video from Friday's Kap & Haugh Show below: