Vinny Del Negro has accepted his first head coaching job, agreeing to take over a Chicago Bulls team that went from 49 wins to 49 losses in a season and missed the playoffs after making the second round in 2007.

Bulls general manager John Paxson plans to introduce Del Negro as the team's new coach at a news conference this afternoon, team spokesman Matt Yob said.

Del Negro, most recently the Phoenix Suns' assistant general manager, had been interested in replacing Mike D'Antoni on the Suns' sideline. But that job went to Terry Porter.

The Bulls' sluggish start cost coach Scott Skiles his job in December. Interim coach Jim Boylan got fired April 17.


* As expected, Michael Curry was named the head coach of the Detroit Pistons. The move came a week after the team fired Flip Saunders. Curry was on Saunders' staff last season, his first as a coach.

Assistant coach Dave Cowens, who also was also on Saunders' staff, will be retained.

* Washington's Gilbert Arenas opted out of the final year of his contract. The move had been long expected as Arenas has said he would forgo the final year of his 6-year, $65 million deal so that he could re-sign with the team for an even larger amount.

While he has expressed a desire to remain with the Wizards, he has also said he won't return unless the team also re-signs Antawn Jamison, who is also set to become a free agent.

* A $300,000 lawsuit that accused former Portland Trail Blazer Zach Randolph of battering and harassing a man he thought had given information to police about ex-teammate Qyntel Woods has been dropped.

Robert Bacote filed suit against Woods and Randolph, now with the New York Knicks, in October 2006. He said the pair wrongly suspected him of telling police 2 years earlier that Woods abused animals. *