Golf is the only sport where you can screw up 16 times in a row but then proceed to have ONE solid hit that tricks your mind into thinking “pssshh, okay I got this now.” It’s an infuriating mental rollercoaster that I can’t get off.
Anyway, let’s talk about basketball.
• The Bulls might have a new front office, but I wouldn’t expect this upcoming free agency to feel all that different – Arturas Karnisovas and Marc Eversley have taken over an organization with limited flexibility. Thanks to a roster full of young players, who are locked up over the next couple of seasons, and the $28.5 million earmarked for Otto Porter’s pocket, the Bulls will probably look to add only a couple more experienced bench players into the mix. Not until 2021 should Chicago be talked about as serious players in the free-agent market with (hopefully) max-level cap space opening up. Regardless, whether it’s signing a superstar or a role player, the Bulls will have to figure out their sales pitch. For some of us on the outside looking in, it feels like a change in front-office leadership should be enough to draw some players to the Windy City, and while there might be some truth in that, this is still an incredibly young team that hasn’t shown many signs of improvement. Free agents are sold on production … not hope.
• Unfortunately, hope is all the Bulls have right now. As Bleacher Report writes, “the selling point here is that with the addition of one or two missing ingredients and relatively good health, this team should compete for a playoff spot right away.” Considering this offseason’s cap situation will not allow for any big splash (and, to be clear, it’s hard to make any real estimates thanks to the fact that this long hiatus will hurt the cap), this Bulls team might be able to get by on this selling point just fine. I think Karnisovas and Eversley know that whatever they’ll be selling isn’t a one-year plan. Instead, the focus will likely be to sneak into the playoffs and then show free agents they’re the team with money and young, proven talent in 2021.
• The Bulls should be following the mold of the Brooklyn Nets, an organization that created a competitive, young team and snuck them into the playoffs in 2018. All the logistics may not be the same, and I doubt the Bulls would land a Durant-Irving level duo, but the general philosophy is there. The Nets understood you have to walk before you can run. To an extent, that’s also what Karnisovas and Eversley experienced with the Denver Nuggets and Philadelphia 76ers, respectively (although, those were much longer walks). In other words, you don’t sign Dwyane Wade and Rajon Rondo to try and become instant competitors. Oh, and you don’t say “we’re a playoff team” if you have no freaking clue. You simply take one step at a time.
• The Detroit Pistons have some familiar names on their candidates list. Both Weaver and Hughes were reportedly on Chicago’s list of hopeful front office additions.
ESPN Sources: Three serious candidates have emerged for the Detroit Pistons GM job: Clippers assistant GM Mark Hughes, Nets assistant GM Jeff Peterson and Thunder VP of Basketball Operations Troy Weaver. Those conversations are continuing this week.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 15, 2020
• Sorry Detroit … Bulls already got the best guy.
• Patrick Beverley tells it like it is.
— Patrick Beverley (@patbev21) June 14, 2020
• We all know he’s right. If LeBron James wants to finish the season, the NBA will do everything in its power to make it happen. Not to mention, we’ve already been told that a chunk of the league’s superstars have given Silver a thumbs up. I still think it’s incredibly important for players to share their concerns, but it’s hard to imagine their voices can be as loud.
• I’ve seen this idea floated around a bit …
Utah Jazz center Ed Davis would love to see NBA players donate a percentage of their pay to Black Lives Matter and find other ways to support the movement. But he doesn’t think sitting out is the answer and explains why in this wide-ranging Q&A: https://t.co/xAzoaLdyZT
— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) June 15, 2020
• Bulls need a coach like this …
Rick Carlisle had no patience for Salah Mejri💀
“You got two fu-king points, get the fu-k out of here.”pic.twitter.com/mMoi6al1Eh
— Hoop Central (@TheHoopCentral) June 15, 2020
• The man is from Chicago … has played in Chicago … and he gave his jersey to Benny the Bull. I still think this was ridiculous.
That time when Dwyane Wade ended up exchanging jerseys with Benny the Bull and not any of the Bulls players after playing his last game in Chicago. pic.twitter.com/MZVEGnRGPv
— Daniel Greenberg (@ChiSportUpdates) June 14, 2020
• This is such a mood.
Bye Bye Bye – NSYNC pic.twitter.com/G9FAsIjCHQ
— Michael Jordan Jamming Out (@JordanJamming) June 14, 2020
• “Gafford out” better be how he ends every press conference from now on.
— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) June 14, 2020