Report: Brian Scalabrine retires

Updated: September 6, 2012, 2:18 PM ET
By Nick Friedell | ESPNChicago.com

CHICAGO -- Former Chicago Bulls forward Brian Scalabrine has turned down an opportunity to be an assistant on Tom Thibodeau's staff and will become a broadcaster for Comcast New England, Yahoo! Sports reported Thursday afternoon.

Scalabrine, who played two seasons for the Bulls, will serve as a color commentator for Boston Celtics games next season. He spent five seasons playing in Boston before coming to Chicago. He admitted that the decision to turn down a chance to be on Thibodeau's staff was a tough one for him.

"Saying no to Thibs was the hardest decision I've ever had to make," Scalabrine said, according to Yahoo.

Scalabrine's decision shouldn't come as much of a surprise. He has stated in the past that he would prefer a broadcasting position over being an NBA assistant because of the demanding schedule.

"I think the only three jobs that I would ever take would be [as] an assistant or a head coach at USC, Oregon or Washington," he told ESPNChicago.com in January. "Because I really enjoy the Pac [12]. I like the way the system is. I like those three places a lot. USC being a place I went to school so ... With the Oregon and Washington [jobs] I have a lot of connections, I know a lot of the high school coaches up there, a lot of the college coaches up there. I think I would do a good job of recruiting the area. So when I say I don't want to coach, the NBA level is just a whole 'nother animal with the games coming at you.

"But ... two games a week, one game week, you can study. You can really prepare. You can prepare your team. It's a much different life than going through a walk-through in a hotel ballroom. And it's a more laid back lifestyle. It's not as high profile. You've got to work, but it's not as high profile as the NBA where it's just one thing after another after another. Media and this thing and that thing. It's a much different life."

Nick Friedell | email

Chicago Bulls beat reporter
Nick Friedell is the Chicago Bulls beat reporter for ESPN Chicago. Friedell is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and joined ESPNChicago.com for its launch in April 2009.