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Aldridge: Health woes forcing Paxson's decision on quitting

By staff
Posted Feb 13 2009 3:53PM

Several league sources told TNT's David Aldridge that Chicago general manager John Paxson has said that health concerns have caused him to consider quitting. Two sources said that they had been told Paxson had an ailment that threatens to become more serious.

"The stress of the job is really getting to John," one source said.

Paxson has not returned two phone calls.

Media outlets across the country are reporting that Paxson is on the verge of either quitting or moving aside. A story in the New York Post said Paxson could resign after next week's trading deadline. The Bulls reportedly have tried to discredit the Post report.

Another story, in the Chicago Tribune, said that Paxson could quit but remain with the team's front office. The Chicago Sun-Times reported, too, that Paxson will resign, saying that it's possible that it won't take effect until the end of the season.

Paxson has taken the blame for the Bulls' poor performance this season, saying that it reflected on his ability to put a competitive team together. But owner Jerry Reinsdorf told reporters late last month that Paxson was not at fault. The Bulls are fighting for one of the final playoff spots in the Eastern Conference but have struggled to play consistently.

Paxson also has been criticized for hiring Vinny del Negro as coach. Del Negro [pictured above left, with Paxson] had never been a coach on any level. The Bulls tried to hire Mike D'Antoni after he was allowed to leave Phoenix, but the two sides could not agree on a contract number and D'Antoni wound up taking the Knicks' job.

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