Chicago Bulls Draft Report

Breaking down the Bulls draft picks and roster outlook heading into the NBA draft

2017-18 W/L: 27-55 2018-19 W/L: 22-60

Finished 13 in eastern conference (Missed Playoffs)

Team Needs: PG, SG, SF, PF, C

Free Agents: Robin Lopez, Wayne Selden, Timothe Luwawa-Cabbarot, Ryan Arcidiacono, Shaquille Harrison

Under Contract: Otto Porter, Zach Lavine, Christiano Felicio, Lauri Markkanen, Wendell Carter, Kris Dunn, Denzel Valentine, Chandler Hutchinson, Antonio Blakeney

Pick 1: 1st Round-7th Overall

Players who could be available and fit with this pick:

PG: Coby White, Darius Garland

SG: Jarrett Culver

SF: De’Andre Hunter, Cam Reddish

Pick 1: 2nd Round-38th Overall

Players who could be available and fit with this pick:

PG: Ty Jerome, Ky Bowman, Jordan Bone

SG: Dylan Windler, Jaylen Nowell, Miye Oni, Talen Horton-Tucker

SF: Kris Wilkes, Ignas Brazdeikis, Darius Bazley

PF: Isaiah Roby, Luka Samanic, Jalen Mcdaniels, Nicolas Claxton

C: Daniel Gafford, Mfiondu Kabengele

The Bulls have endured back to back seasons with wins in the 20’s after making the playoffs 8 times in the 9 years previous to that point. They elected to go younger and set themselves up to be able to obtain high draft picks, something that has not worked out entirely in their favor. Zach Lavine has played well since being traded to Chicago but there are questions regarding whether or not he is a long term option at point guard considering he is a scorer first and foremost. Lauri Markkanen is a player that is definitely in their plans going forward with his ability to score and shoot the basketball at his size. They traded for Otto Porter Jr. who is a solid player that comes with a bloated contract, however despite eating up a large chunk of cap space, he is a starter level wing in the league. There are some other pieces that have shown promise but the jury is still out on the remainder of their young roster and only time will tell how they develop going forward. While the 7th pick in the draft certainly affords you the opportunity to select a player that can make a big impact or become a star, this draft is not viewed as a deep class and whoever they end up taking will come with a risk factor. Because of this drafting position they will be in a spot where they are waiting and seeing who is selected in front of their pick, however they are in a good position to draft the best player available with their current roster makeup. If they believe in Lavine as their point guard of the next 5 or so years then Darius Garland and Coby White are probably off of the table, but it would not be a major surprise to see them draft a point guard and figure out how they can co-exist with Lavine playing both off and on the ball. White would most likely be the best option if they choose to go this route considering his size and ability to play either guard position if necessary. Assuming they elect to choose a player who is not a point guard, they will have a choice between taking one of the wing’s that do not get picked up in front of them. Jarrett Culver, Cam Reddish and De’Andre Hunter would all fit in with their youth movement and it is unlikely that more than 1 of them are available when the Bulls make their selection so it could be an easy choice. 

With their second pick they can go a number of different ways, which will somewhat be determined by how they go with their first selection. Providing they choose a wing with the 7th pick, it would make sense to take another guard or small forward here to add depth and hopefully hit a home run with a second round star but there are plenty of options whether they are thinking to go big or small. Ty Jerome, Ky Bowman and Jordan Bone could all be available here, however it would not seem likely they will take a point guard with this pick if they pass on lead ball handlers with their first selection meaning they have confidence in Lavine going forward. If they want to add some scoring from the wing players like Dylan Windler, Ignas Brazdeikis, Jaylen Nowell, and Kris Wilkes could all provide this but as with any second round pick those players are no sure things. Talen Horton-Tucker is a local product and with his length and defensive abilities he could be an interesting contrast to the scorers first mentality that many of the players on the current roster possess. It does not seem like a likely scenario they would select a big given they drafted Wendell Carter last season and as we mentioned they have Markkanen playing well, but they could attempt to add another power forward or center that can be a big piece as they attempt to get back to relevancy. There should be plenty of power forwards available with upside at this draft position with Nicolas Claxton, Isaiah Roby, Luka Samanic, and Jalen Mcdaniels all bringing different skill sets to the table but ones that would fit well with the modern NBA game. If a center like Mfiondu Kabengele slips and is available he will be hard to pass up, however he would bring a very similar game to Markkanen with his outside shooting. If we were picking for the Bulls, we would take whichever player is available with the 7th pick out of the Cam Reddish, Jarrett Culver, and De’Andre Hunter group. Then with the second round pick, we would continue to add scoring and go with another shooting guard or small forward that can fill it up with the hopes that the team can become an offensive power. As the players on their roster mature and the draft picks enter the league the franchise should improve but this draft will play a big role in the team development if they are able to select a future star with their top ten pick.  

 

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