Stop saying the Bulls are cheap

For RedEye

Chicago fandom is known for creating false scenarios.

The Curse, Bear weather, Corey Crawford glove side and the "meteoric" rise of Josh McCown come to mind.

The most puzzling seems to surround the Bulls and their allegedly tight purse strings.

I want to think our sports fans can use some of the passion they have and channel it into critical thinking skills. Some do, but it seems many do not. Here are four reasons why the Bulls aren't cheap:

They gave Jay Williams money when they didn't have to.

Remember when former No. 1 draft pick Jay Williams totaled his bike and his NBA career? What most fans conveniently forgot was Williams violated his contract by operating a motorcycle. The Bulls could have terminated his deal on the spot. The team came to an agreement with Williams on a $3 million settlement along with getting their former point guard the best medical treatment available. Sounds like Jerry Reinsdorf and John Paxson went above what was required.

They paid Michael Jordan.

Ever since the failed free agency coup of Tracy McGrady and Grant Hill, the Bulls have gotten a bad rap. Like most rumors, people will run with them until they become the truth in someone's eyes. Remember, the Bulls did give Michael Jordan $30 million. Maybe it wasn't what he might have deserved over the totality of his career, but that amount of dough is nothing to sneeze at. Also, have you ever wondered why teams in Florida and Texas have an edge in free agency? The aforementioned states have no income tax. It seems like your beef isn't with Reinsdorf, it might be with Illinois' General Assembly. Maybe the fans will get out and vote next time.

Reinsdorf takes care of former players.

Look closely at the Bulls and the White Sox. Both teams employ former players, and Reinsdorf might be loyal to a fault. Scottie Pippen, John Paxson, Bill Wennington, Stacey King, Ozzie Guillen, Harold Baines, Robin Ventura, Jim Thome and Frank Thomas have all been or are currently with one of those organizations in some capacity.

Derrick Rose's contract.

Even though Derrick Rose hasn't played much in recent seasons, he is still the team highest paid player. His current contract spawned the "Derrick Rose Rule"; you're crazy if you don't think Reinsdorf was all for rewarding him in the wake of all he achieved in his young career.

Evan F. Moore is a RedEye special contributor.

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