*insert witty introduction here*
Yeah, I’m drawing a blank here today. The Bulls play Summer League at 4:00 p.m. CT today against the Hornets, so just keep that in mind.
- Early news of the day, Wendell Carter Jr. had his core muscle surgery yesterday and is scheduled to be back in time for training camp.
— Bleacher Nation Bulls (@BN_Bulls) July 10, 2019
- This morning, while writing this up, I got very sidetracked watching Carter Jr. highlights (I don’t see a problem here). I have to say, I’m super excited to get him back on the court. I know a lot of the talk this offseason is about Zach LaVine and Lauri Markkanen (and rightfully so because they need to take the next step), but I don’t think we should underestimate exactly what Wendell Carter Jr. can bring to this team.
- We’ve talked so much already about how the Bulls look more like a modern, versatile NBA team with the additions of Tomas Satoransky, Thaddeus Young and Coby White, but a healthy Carter Jr. amps things up even more. While he doesn’t carry the same kind of jumper or three-ball as his teammates, he can still hit from downtown when left open and, will most likely, only improve this skill over time. Inside though, he is a beast. The guy is so crafty and finds the right times to go up and attack the basket. Not to mention, his swats at the basketball are a thing of beauty.
- All in all, I’m just pointing out that when he was on the court last year, his energy and presence just brought a different feel. He will be able to run the floor in transition and work fast alongside White, and the potential alley-oops already have me salivating. I think Carter Jr.’s importance as big-man may fly under-the-radar with all the other players to keep an eye on this season, but I have no doubt he helps the Bulls win some big games. In the post above I shared a highlight package from his 25-point performance against the Nuggets last season… and, yeah, the Nuggets have some pretty decent big men. I’m sure I’ll be talking more about Carter Jr. over the course of this offseason, but just don’t forget about the young lad.
- More compliments for the Bulls. Man, I really hope they avoid finding a way to royally screw this up. Wouldn’t it just be great if people’s expectations were decent heading into the season AND the team played decent when the season actually started? A boy can dream, can’t he?
Such a great deal for the Bulls. He should start and ease Coby in on the second unit (would be great pushing the ball with Gafford especially). Sato will make everyone better w/ ball movement + quick decisions & can play off LaVine. Team will be solid/watchable this year. https://t.co/cvfYMLFq1B
— Cole Zwicker (@colezwicker) July 10, 2019
- Speaking of compliments, Zach Lowe talked Bulls on his podcast for a hot second. He, once again, reiterated that he found the Bulls moves to be one of the underrated offseasons around the league, which guest Rachel Nichols and Howard Beck agreed with. The three of them also discussed the Bulls potential to be in the postseason fight this year, and all sound like they believe the Bulls can be right in that conversation with their current roster. Lowe commented: “Satoransky, LaVine, Porter, Markkanen, Carter, like we don’t have to love the Porter, Markkanen, Carter fit at that frontcourt, but they’re all very good players, some combination of that is good….”
- Lowe also went on to bring up how LaVine may have his deficiencies but he is a very good scorer and athlete, something that was obviously on full display last season. Many have gone into doubting whether LaVine can actually put up the kind of stats he did last season on a winning basketball team, but I’m on the boat that says he can. NBA.com Bulls reporter Sam Smith wrote a great piece on LaVine, which you can read here.
- When the lede of the story is this good, you know you should read the piece: “Zach LaVine is the guy pounding on the door to greatness. He badly wants into that elite assembly, and he possesses the right stuff, the shooting and scoring skills, the athletic makeup and the desire. But just when he can hear them calling from the other side, the key breaks in the lock.”
- Sam Smith also wrote this article on Young…
“I just want to do the same thing similar to what I did in Indiana… making sure I am willing my guys to victory and just bringing that leadership and attitude and that dog and that grit to each and every game." – Thaddeus Young
— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) July 9, 2019
- Our daily laugh at the Knicks:
Michael Jordan was prepared to sign with the Knicks in 1996 if the Bulls didn't have a better offer.
AND Shaquille O' Neal was also interested in signing with the team.
The Knicks have such a rich history of dropping the ball in free agency. (h/t u/porzingisfromdeep) pic.twitter.com/Mo2aylwYD5
— Basketball Forever (@Bballforeverfb) July 10, 2019
- Watch this. Love this. Watch this again.
— Bleacher Nation Bulls (@BN_Bulls) July 9, 2019
- SQUAD ROLL UP.
- Bleacher Nation is doing an awesome Blogathon, and if you donate enough for this great cause, Brett will do plenty of dumb, yet awesome, things online for you! Plus, if you’re just a fan of BN content, you can show your support for us by donating (all proceeds are going to MakeAWish!)
— Bleacher Nation (@BleacherNation) July 10, 2019