team. (AP Photo/Paul) Chicago (AP) Chicago Bulls fans heckled former general manager Jerry Krause on Friday night at a halftime ceremony honoring the organization’s greats. It appeared to bring his wife to tears, and it infuriated former players.

In addition to being one of the 13 members of the first class of the “Ring of Honor,” Krause was recognized for being the architect of the Bulls’ six championship teams. Thelma, Krause’s widow, spoke in his place after his death in 2017. Thelma declined to address the boisterous jeers of some of the crowd by remaining seated instead.

Former Bulls guard and Warriors coach Steve Kerr, who was also honored, said, “It’s really terrible,” when he was in the locker room with his team at the time. “I’m terribly disappointed in the fans because the message the squad sent to the city yesterday night and tonight was one of love and happiness. I want to make clear that they did not boo, because there were a lot of admirers. The jeers should feel bad about what they did.


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Chicago is a sports town, so let me tell you what—the worst thing I’ve ever witnessed in my life was what happened today when Jerry Krause’s name was called and the audience jeered at him and his wife, who was accepting the award on his behalf,” said King. “I’m sorry for that woman. I brought her to tears, therefore whomever heckled her in this arena should feel bad about themselves.

A number of former Bulls greats received thunderous ovation, including Hall of Fame coach Phil Jackson. Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, and Dennis Rodman—all former NBA players—did not show up for the celebration, though.

The rivalry that Jordan, Pippen, and Jackson occasionally had with Krause was one of the subjects of the documentary “The Last Dance,” which concentrated on the 1997–98 season—the final one of the Bulls dynasty that Krause helped construct.

“He played a significant part in the success that the Bulls had, building one of the finest teams ever assembled,” Bulls star DeMar DeRozan said of Krause. “We should honor and cherish our surviving friends and relatives.”

Rodman had planned to show up, but inclement weather caused him to cancel his trip. Jordan and he both submitted video greetings to acknowledge the honor.