Following the Chicago Bulls triumph in the 1998 NBA Finals over the Utah Jazz, what were the most significant mistakes Jerry Krause made?
During the 1997-98 season, the Chicago Bulls could not get away from the storylines of what was to come to round out the century and millennium. The Bulls had a general manager that seemed bound to break apart the core that had won the franchise so many titles throughout the 1990’s, becoming one of the most dominant dynasties in sports history.
Award-winning general manager Jerry Krause was the one who had built up the core that won the Bulls their six NBA Championships throughout the 1990’s. He deserves credit for putting that all together. But he also deserved the criticism for not finding his place and role within the organization when they broke apart.
Krause was the ultimate deciding factor when the Bulls core broke apart during the 1998 offseason. The Bulls had just won their sixth title of the decade, after beating the Utah Jazz for the second year in a row in the NBA Finals. They also beat the Jazz in a closer than anticipated series in the 1997 NBA Finals.
The Bulls started out the decade by battling back and forth with the Detroit Pistons. Beating the divisional foe Pistons in the 1991 Eastern Conference Finals was the gateway to the Bulls getting to their first NBA Finals of the decade, eventually beating Magic Johnson and the Los Angeles Lakers to claim the franchise’s first title.
Moreover, the recently released 10-part documentary series highlighting the Bulls 1997-98 title team “The Last Dance” put a spotlight on Krause and how he helped break up this superstar core following the 1998 NBA Finals.
Here’s a look into the three biggest mistakes that Krause made as Bulls general manager during the 1998 offseason, after the franchise’s final title of the decade.