Zach LaVine's Commitment, EuroBasket Concerns, Stealing Dragic, and Other Bulls Bullets

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Zach LaVine’s Commitment, EuroBasket Concerns, Stealing Dragic, and Other Bulls Bullets

Chicago Bulls

My significant other and I officially welcomed a new family member on Monday! And, no, she’s not human.

Winnie is a 3-year-old Jack Russell Terrier who weighs 12lbs, loves tennis balls, and will surely fall asleep on your tummy in a matter of seconds. If you love all things doggos, I’ll post photos of her on my personal Twitter account sometime soon, which you can find here.

Also, I’ll probably gush about here for the next few days in true Dog Dad fashion, so expect a handful of my upcoming intros in bullets to be pup-related. I may even come here for some advice!

  • I love a good Zach LaVine appreciation tweet, but we also probably shouldn’t pretend like this is some kind of impressive achievement.
  • As we all know too well, the Bulls put every piece of food on Zach LaVine’s plate and begged him to eat it. Once he returned from his ACL injury and the organization was in full-blown rebuild mode, they had zero other players who could contribute at a high level. The hope was that either Lauri Markkanen or Wendell Carter Jr. would begin to look the part of a worthy co-star, but we both know how those two No. 7-overall picks panned out. So LaVine’s place in the franchise leaderboard since 2019 is, in part, thanks to circumstance, and I almost feel bad that he had to carry that much of the workload for that long.
  • Now, having said that, LaVine still deserves his round of applause for handling his business in the way he did. I remain incredibly impressed with the way he’s carried himself ever since arriving in Chicago, prioritizing his craft and tuning out the bullsh*t. He may not have previously possessed the status needed to successfully demand a trade, but he didn’t need to smile through all the crap this organization spilled over the United Center. I mean, this guy paid a fine for the head coach that shall not be named, sat live on ESPN as “Fire GarPax” chants showered down from the audience, and constantly preached to the media that everything would be ok. The Bulls still have a long way to go, but he’s proving that his commitment to Chicago has been worth it.
  • All of this is why LaVine remains the face of the franchise even after a year where DeMar DeRozan claimed an All-NBA honor. LaVine is the $215.2 million player. LaVine has been here through thick and thin. LaVine has shown steady improvement year after year. I know he may not currently be considered a true superstar, but he has the elite skillset and big-market home that could lead him closer and closer to that level.

“We’re going to play four games in five days,” Doncic told Eurohoops. “Yesterday, basically we had two games in 24 hours. Yes this should change for everybody. Everybody is doing the same. Everybody has less rest. It’s a problem because of injuries you know. More injuries can happen. Especially the clubs wouldn’t be very glad.”

  • Those words came in response to Evan Fournier’s comments about how he hopes the tournament will consider allowing players more rest moving forward. And he has a very good point. The game is about as jam-packed as it gets. The whole thing spans just 18 days and starts with a round-robin group stage. The qualifying teams then move on to a single-elimination round.
  • Every one of these games matters, too, so it’s not as if players can go run at half-speed like in preseason action (except maybe Giannis). Fortunately, injuries (at least to NBA players) thus far have been minimal, but Danilo Gallinari’s torn ACL is a reminder of what can happen during extra competitive play. Let’s hope everyone else participating can come back to the states healthy and ready to start a new year.
  • Speaking of Doncic, the Dallas Mavericks are reportedly debating whether or not to add another veteran guard, per long-time NBA report Marc Stein. The news doesn’t come as a major surprise considering they lost Jalen Brunson to the Knicks this summer, but it is kind of funny knowing they had Goran Dragic seemingly there for the taking. Close friends with their franchise cornerstone, many have expected Dragic to end up in Dallas for the past couple of seasons. However, the organization’s refusal to promise him a legitimate role led to the Bulls’ prying him away.
  • Can the pro roster please bring these jerseys back? The latest pinstripe edition just wasn’t as good.
  • Getting guys healthy in the nick of time.
  • You have my attention …

Author: Elias Schuster

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