Sportress of Blogitude

Joakim Noah pens heartfelt farewell to Chicago

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Joakim Noah may be going back to the city of his birth to play for the New York Knicks, but the longtime Bulls star first took a moment to pen a heartfelt farewell to the town and fans who made the Windy City feel like a second home.

Noah, a New York native, articulated his gratitude to Chicago and its passionate basketball fans in an essay published in the Chicago Tribune.

“I moved here nine years ago and quickly got an understanding of what the city was about,” Noah wrote. “Hard work. No nonsense. Grind. Loyalty. Passion. I wanted to represent those qualities every time I stepped onto the court and competed for the Bulls.”

Noah goes on to thank every player he called a teammate during his tenure with the Bulls, writing the “best times in my life took place on the United Center floor.”

Noah also mentions in the essay that he will remain active in community development in the city through his Noah’s Arc charitable foundation, writing, “I will continue to do my best to help this city. Chicago is home for the rest of my life, and my dream is still to help make the city a safer place for kids to grow up in.’’

“My journey now brings me home to New York and the team I grew up rooting for as a kid,” Noah writes in his closing passage. “But nothing has mattered more to me over the past nine years than the city of Chicago, the Chicago Bulls and all of the passionate Bulls fans. There are way too many people to thank individually, but I want to give special thanks to the Reinsdorf family for making me a part of the Chicago Bulls family and everything that that represents.”

While he leaves Chicago with great memories and the knowledge that he contributed to the city through charitable acts, Noah is eager to start the next chapter in his NBA career, as evidenced by how he already has hit the hardwood with new teammate Carmelo Anthony at the longtime Knicks star’s Midtown gym.

[New York Post]