A Lonzo Ball Status Check, Good Dude DeRozan, Drummond's Shot-Making, and Other Bulls Bullets

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A Lonzo Ball Status Check, Good Dude DeRozan, Drummond’s Shot-Making, and Other Bulls Bullets

Chicago Bulls

I’ve learned some valuable lessons over the last year:

(1) Be conscious of your cheese intake
(2) Always buy the 50 SPF sunscreen
(3) Stretch before any physical activity
(4) The Chicago Bulls need Lonzo Ball

Let’s talk a little more about that last one.

  • Whether the Bulls will start the 2022-23 campaign with their starting point guard in the lineup continues to be a mystery. Ball received surgery on his torn meniscus back in January, and his 6-8 week recovery timeline quickly became … *looks at calendar* … seven months. The last we’ve heard about Ball is that he is moving in a “very very positive” direction. However, if we consider how his rehab process has gone, it’s hard to know exactly how to interpret those words. Does “very very positive” mean he can now fully ramp up for a return to play? Or does it mean he’s simply experiencing less discomfort and a timetable is still up in the air? We simply don’t know at this point in time, and I figure things will remain that way until training camp starts up in September.
  • ESPN’s Jamal Collier appeared on NBA Today to discuss Ball’s latest, reiterating that the Bulls organization has been “vague” when it comes to providing status updates. Having said that, he did mention that somebody in Lonzo’s camp signaled that he could be ready for the start of the season, but Collier instantly questioned whether or not the Bulls view things the same way:

“I’ve talked to somebody in Lonzo’s camp that is expressing some confidence that he’ll be ready to go for the start of the season, but, just me speculating, I could see them slowplaying Lonzo a little bit to make sure he’s 100 percent and really ready to go because you saw the way their season changed in January,” Collier said.

  • At the end of the day, Lonzo Ball’s camp can express as much confidence as they want. When Ball returns to the floor will be up to the Bulls and their medical team, and I tend to side with Collier’s belief that they will take the cautious approach as we head into the fall. The last thing the Bulls want is for Ball to take the court and begin to experience similar issues, especially after we saw how much he meant to this team’s two-way success last season. Not to mention, it’s going to have been a very long time since he competed in any five-on-five action. Throwing him right into NBA game speed to start the year could only increase the chance of other injuries.
  • I’ve seen some pushback on the idea that Goran Dragic was a Lonzo Ball insurance signing. But how can we see it any other way? Look, nobody is saying that Dragic is anywhere near the same player as Ball. He isn’t. What Dragic does provide, however, is veteran experience at a position where the Bulls have had none. If Ball were to go down at any point in the season, trusting Dragic’s overall basketball IQ over youngsters like Coby White, Ayo Dosunmu, and Dalen Terry isn’t a particularly bad idea. Yes, I have my questions about how much the guy has left in the tank, but he gives the Bulls another option if Ball ran into trouble. Simple as that.
  • Also, when we consider the Ball question marks, it makes plenty of sense that the Bulls were hoping Dragic would opt out of EuroBasket.
  • After DeMar DeRozan’s most recent appearance at the Drew League, the All-Star stepped outside to sign autographs and take photos. TMZ Sports caught some footage of it here. Shoutout to DeRozan for being a man of the people! He honestly comes off like such a great dude, and he’s certainly the type of person you want to help rebrand an organization.
  • ICYMI: Kevin Durant reportedly gave the Brooklyn Nets a big fat ultimatum on Monday afternoon. If the organization wants to keep him, he expects Sean Marks and Steve Nash to be fired. The decision surely feels like one to consider for Joe Tsai, but the owner didn’t take long to respond to the news on Twitter with an interesting remark:
  • For those who have wondered why people like me have concerns over Andre Drummond, the stat below does the trick.
  • Drummond’s field goal percentage at the rim has ranked in the NBA’s 37th percentile or worse in seven of his last eight seasons. So if you were frustrated with Vucevic’s interior shotmaking, it’s not like Drummond has ever proven to be more efficient.
  • This is incredibly well made …
  • Hey, the Bulls made it out of the bottom nine.
  • A good note to keep in mind as we look toward another season:
  • Cool. Great. Awesome. Love it.
  • He’s already given us a lot.

Author: Elias Schuster

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