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Bulls General Manager Krause Resigns

Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Chicago Bulls executive vice president of basketball operations Jerry Krause resigned Monday, citing health problems. The 64-year-old Krause played a major role in building the Bulls' world championship teams of the 1990's and was a two-time NBA Executive of the Year.

Following its sixth NBA title in 1998, the club has struggled to rebuild under Krause. The Bulls are just 27-50 this year and will finish with a losing record for the fifth straight season.

"The rigors and stress of the job have caused me some minor physical problems in the past few years," said Krause. "Those problems can be eliminated if I lessen my load for a while and concentrate on overcoming them. My first obligation is to accomplish that for my wife, children and grandchildren.

"It is only fair to the players and staff that (chairman) Jerry Reinsdorf be able to select my successor as soon as possible prior to the draft just as he did with me on March 26, 1985.

"I take great pride in what we’ve accomplished here. The staff, players and coaches will always be a bright spot in my heart.

"Upon leaving I’m very confident that we have assembled the key pieces so that the franchise can return to the NBA’s elite teams in the very near future.

"I am not retiring. I’m going to take some time off and spend it with my family before making any decision on my future. I will leave my options open.

"I want to thank Jerry Reinsdorf for giving me the opportunity to fulfill a lifelong dream, to be able to general manage a team in my birthplace, the greatest city in the world.

"I have chosen not to have a press conference with regard to this announcement. This was an extremely hard decision to make and I believe there is no need to belabor it."

Reinsdorf released the following statement:

"Jerry Krause is one of a kind. He brought with him a vision of how to build a champion and he proceeded to create one of the most dominant champions of all time. No basketball fan in America can begin to imagine the World Champion Chicago Bulls without his imprint. There would not have been a coach Phil Jackson. There would not have been Scottie Pippen, Bill Cartwright, Dennis Rodman, or a host of others who wore Bulls uniforms during those championship seasons. He creatively surrounded the best player in the world, Michael Jordan, with the kind of talent to be a consistent and exciting winner.

"I am already considering successors and plan to announce one within the next month. It is vital that the new general manager be in place as soon as possible to evaluate talent both on the current team and throughout the league to take maximum advantage of the upcoming draft and free agent signing season. We now have the nucleus for the next elite Bulls team and are enthusiastic about our prospects for the next few seasons.

"Personally, Jerry has always been a battler and the Bulls support his decision to put his health first. We wish him, and his family, the very best."

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