The Draft Lottery Curse, Bulls Odds, Second Round Targets, Karnisovas' Perspective, and Other Bulls Bullets

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The Draft Lottery Curse, Bulls Odds, Second Round Targets, Karnisovas’ Perspective, and Other Bulls Bullets

Chicago Bulls

I wouldn’t be pulling my weight as a member of Bleacher Nation if I didn’t bet something stupid on tonight’s lottery outcomes.

So, this is what I got for ya …

Real talk, I’d probably do that even if I didn’t work here.

If you got any other stupid things you want me to add on top of that, let me know, and I’ll consider it.

•   Deep breaths, everyone. Deep breaths. Today is the day. At 7:30 p.m. CT, the Chicago Bulls can break the Draft Lottery curse. New front office face Arturas Karnisovas will serve as the organization representative as the franchise tries to grab pretty much anything other than the No. 7 pick. For the past three seasons, this team has ended up picking from this slot, and even though this draft has one of the less intriguing and confusing prospect pools, selecting with a pick better than No. 7-overall will feel like a major victory. Anyway, for a better understanding of the Bulls odds this evening, check this out:

•   Considering the organization has finally changed its front office and, more recently, departed ways with Jim Boylen, it feels like the basketball gods must be on their side a little. Right!? Tell me that’s right!? Look, I’m not even asking for the No. 1 pick, I’ll happily take it, but I’ll also gladly take a top-4 slot off the NBA’s hand. With a draft like this, there isn’t a massive difference between No. 1-caliber talent and No. 4-caliber talent – at least, in my opinion. On the other hand, the options at No. 7 or below do seem to be a tier lower in terms of “potential.”

•   Also, a higher pick means more value on the trade market, and I really don’t think we should lose sight of that. Of course, we’re assuming the Bulls will select a player with whatever draft pick they receive, but I wouldn’t rule anything out. In a conversation with Bulls.com’s Sam Smith, Karnisovas said he is going to look at all his options. The guy has been a part of several draft-night moves in the past, and he isn’t going to be afraid to pick up the phone to see what’s on the table. We talked more about his comments yesterday, so check it out.

•   By the way, I recommend at least skimming through the Q&A with Karnisovas on Bulls.com. The interview is one of the longer and more thoughtful ones we’ve seen. Also, if you’re curious about whether or not Karnisovas will have a lucky charm with him for the lottery tonight, here’s what he had to say about that: “I do not have one. I don’t even know what kind of poker face I am going to bring to the virtual Lottery. Maybe a very serious Eastern European look. I’m not going to show too much emotion, but I don’t know how I am going to handle it if we have good luck by maybe moving up. I’m hoping.” If the Bulls move up, Karnisovas is 100 percent going to flip the table in excitement and begin to happy dance.

•   According to KSTP’s Darren Wolfson, the Chicago Bulls interviewed Minnesota’s Daniel Oturu yesterday. The big man had a great season in 2019-20, averaging 20.1 points, 11.3 rebounds, and 2.5 blocks per game. Somewhat surprisingly, though, that stat line doesn’t have him super high on the draft board. He is the 6th-ranked center and 36th-overall player on ESPN’s Draft Board. Most mock drafts I’ve seen have him going in the early second round, which means the Bulls would probably have to do some shuffling if they wanted him on the roster. I think he’s the type of player who could truly benefit from the draft combine and individual workouts. Oturu’s numbers are sexy, but I guess his style of play doesn’t offer a high enough ceiling for scouts across the league.

•   To be clear, I also wouldn’t read too much into these interviews. We know Karnisovas likes to do his due diligence, and that means interviewing almost everyone and anyone. As he said in his interview with Smith, the organization has spoken to “a lot” of draft prospects, and he also kind downplayed how important those conversations are: “You get to know them. Listen to their point of view on things. Ask questions about their careers. It’s just a small part of the process. The video evaluation and live evaluation is huge as well and then the background.”

•   The only Jim Boylen related topic that’s still worth discussing …

•   For what it’s worth, last year’s No. 7 pick still turned out pretty fun.



Author: Elias Schuster

Elias Schuster is the Lead Bulls Writer at Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Schuster_Elias.