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After Bernie Bickerstaff coached his final game for the Charlotte Bobcats, he was honored by the Bobcats and part owner Michael Jordan thanked him through a video tape. It was not clear whether Jordan was in the building or not.


Bickerstaff pointed to the suite and joked that most probably Jordan must be sitting there smoking a cigar.


This is Jordan’s first year with the Bobcats and he is rarely seen by the fans and media. However, he has the final say in all matters relating to basketball and there is no doubt he will be have an extremely busy summer this year.


Jordan will have hire a coach and, he will try to re-sign Bobcats’ leading scorer Gerald Wallace. He also be trying to sign up Emeka Okafur on a contract extension while trying to keep on free agent Matt Carroll on the team. The Bobcats have two first round picks, including a lottery pick, and they also have the most money to spend on free agents.


This will be the most important offseason in the Bobcats three year history and Jordan will try and lead them through it after failing in his previous role running a team in Washington.


Bickerstaff said that the Bobcats have to determine what will make them into a winning team.


Under Bickerstaff’s tutelage, the Bobcats have been improving constantly from 18 wins to 26 wins last year and 33 this year. However, to become playoff contenders, majority owner Bob Johnson will have spend a lot of money and this may include doubling its $41 million payroll, which currently is the lowest in the NBA.


Charlotte took Wallace in the expansion draft. Prior to this he was a benchwarmer in Sacramento. With the Bobcats he has blossomed and he is averaging 18.1 points and 7.2 rebounds this season. He is also leading the team in steals with 144. He would most probably opt out of his contract to become a unrestricted free agent. He made $5.5 million this year and as a free agent he can easily get $10 million or more.


Most probably the Bobcats will have a coach by the time the draft picks begin in early June. But winning 7 of their last 11 games hurt their lottery chances. Based on the tiebreaker between Sacramento and Chicago, which holds New York's pick, the Bobcats will have only between a 1.1 and 2.8 percent chance at getting the No. 1 pick.


Jordan has a lot of work cut out him, four years after being fired as the Wizards’ president.


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