While scouring the interwebs this week, I came across a list from HoopsHype that features a ton of recent NBA players who’ve just inked contracts overseas. The sheer amount of recognizable names caught me off guard, especially when we consider just how many played for the Chicago Bulls not too long ago.
With that in mind, I thought I’d share where a handful of familiar faces ended up this summer, as well as provide a brief look back at their Bulls’ career.
Years w/ Bulls: 2019-2021
Team: FC Barcelona
Go back in the BN Bulls archives, and you’ll see just how high I was on Tomas Satoransky.
A savvy passer with strong positional size and sneaky athleticism, the Bulls signed Satoransky away from the Washington Wizards ahead of the 2019-20 season. While he may not have looked like the long-term answer at starting point guard, he sure did seem like a role player worth investing in.
Unfortunately, the good Satoransky memories are scarce. He had a couple of fun jams and savvy assists, but his underwhelming shooting stroke made it hard for the new front office to justify keeping him aboard. He ended up part of the Lonzo Ball sign-and-trade last offseason and went on to play for three(!) different teams in 2021-22. With that in mind, it doesn’t come as a big surprise that he chose to take a massive bag from FC Barcelona and head back to Europe.
Wishing Sato nothing but the best!
Years w/ Bulls: 2015-2021
Team: Fundacion CB Granada – Spain
The longest-tenured Bull on this list, Cristiano Felicio is a name that many in Chicago would love to forget but never will. Appearing in 252 career games, Felicio averaged just 4.3 points and 3.9 rebounds despite making roughly $32 million off the GarPax regime.
After his contract expired last offseason, Felicio failed to find a new home in the NBA and ended up playing for Ratiopharm Ulm in Germany. This season, however, he will suit up for Fundacion CB Granada in Spain.
Years w/ Bulls: 2022
Team: Guangzhou Loong Lions (China)
Bell may not have been in Chicago long, but his name is certainly familiar to Bulls fans. Originally picked by the franchise with the 38th pick in the 2017 draft, he was promptly traded to the Golden State Warriors (where he won a ring) in exchange for cash considerations.
Things eventually came full circle earlier this year, when the Bulls inked Bell to a 10-day contract. While he appeared in just one game, he was at least in town for DeMar DeRozan’s history-making back-to-back buzzer-beaters! Who knows if we would have the game ball without him!?
Years w/ Bulls: 2014-16
Team: Adelaide 36ers
Drafted with the 49th pick in the 2014 NBA Draft after four seasons at the University of New Mexico, Cameron Bairstow spent just two seasons in the NBA – both of which came in Chicago.
He appeared in just 36 total games before departing back to his home country of Australia. From there, he has hopped around the National Basketball League, most recently signing with the Adelaide 36ers. He’s averaged 10.3 points and 5.7 rebounds on 47.5 percent shooting over his NBL career thus far.
Years w/ Bulls: 0
Team: Cholet Basket
Justin Patton never technically suited up for the Chicago Bulls, but he feels like a worthwhile addition considering the franchise did select him with the No. 16 pick in the 2017 NBA Draft. A big man out of Creighton, he was immediately a part of the blockbuster Jimmy Butler trade that helped net the Bulls Zach LaVine.
Patton has played four seasons in the NBA for four different teams. He most recently signed with Cholet Basket of France for what will be his second season of overseas play.
Years w/ Bulls: 2016-18
Team: Turk Telekom
Jerian Grant (brother of Portland’s Jerami Grant) is easily one of the most familiar names on this list. Playing in Chicago from 2016-18 after coming over in the Derrick Rose trade, Grant suited up for 137 total games and averaged 19.8 minutes a night.
He first popped up on Bulls fans’ radar when he helped win a Summer League Championship alongside first-round draft pick Denzel Valentine. Then, after some solid play with the Windy City Bulls, he was eventually able to carve himself out a rotational role for a playoff-bound Bulls team.
However, after the Bulls’ tank ensued the following season, Grant found himself traded to the Orlando Magic. He played 60 games with Nikola Vucevic and Co. before playing a short stint with the Wizards in 2019-20. Only overseas play has come after that, with his most recent stop being in Turkey with Turk Telekom.
Years w/ Bulls: 2018-19
Team: Scaligera Verona
With the Bulls during a forgettable 2018-19 season, Selden was acquired from Memphis as part of the Justin Holiday trade. He appeared in a surprising 43 games for Chicago that season, starting 13.
After his days with the Bulls, Selden joined the Lakers’ G-League affiliate before ending up in Israel. He played well that season and ended up leading his team to a FIBA Europe Cup championship, where he won Final Four MVP honors. His overseas journey continued after that with stops in Turkey and now Italy.
Years w/ Bulls: 2016-17
Team: ASVEL Villeurbanne
Joffrey Lauvergne spent one season in Chicago where he appeared in 20 games alongside the three alphas (what I would give to hear those stories).
The six-foot-eleven big man played one more season in the league with the San Antonio Spurs before he departed for Europe. Now, after a couple of seasons in Lithuania, Lauvergne is headed to France’s ASVEL Villeurbanne, which happens to be owned by San Antonio Spurs great Tony Parker.
Years w/ Bulls: 2016-17
Team: Olympiacos BC
One of the longest-tenured NBA players on this list, Isaiah Canaan first entered the league in 2013-14 for the Houston Rockets. The undersized scoring guard played for six seasons in the league and appeared in 235 total contests. Another forgotten role player on the three-alpha squad, Canaan averaged just 4.6 points on a dismal 26.6 percent from behind the arc.
After the Bulls came stops in Houston, Phoenix, Minnesota, and Milwaukee, eventually leading him to a career in Europe where he’s played well thus far. His latest stop will be in Greece with Arturas Karnisovas’ old team, the Olympiacos BC.
Make sure to check out HoopsHype’s full list of former NBA players now battling overseas here.