The Trade Value Game, Ayo Leads the Way, Fake Trades, DeMar Reacts, and Other Bulls Bullets
I was a traitor last night … and I do not care.
I only got to watch about half of the Chicago Bulls’ epic battle with the Charlotte Hornets because I was making my way to the Clippers-Bucks game. I’ve said this before many times on Bleacher Nation, but my lovely significant other happens to be a diehard Bucks fan. And, yes, like loved Andrew Bogut and randomly throws out the name TJ Ford, so we’re not talking about one of those new-age Bucks fans.
She’ll typically scoop up a handful of tickets before the season starts, and she knew I wanted to get a chance to see Kawhi Leonard and Paul George in action. We typically try to grab games that don’t align with the Bulls, but last night was a wonderful exception. The game came down to the final possession and Giannis Antetokounmpo dropped 50+. So, as much as I would have loved to watch Ayo Dosunmu lead the Bulls to victory, I’m content with my decision.
- I am all caught up on last night’s game now … and what a weird 48 minutes. I guess I was happy to see the Bulls take care of business in the way they should’ve one week ago, but what does it say about the current state of the team that Ayo Dosunmu, Coby White, and Andre Drummond combined for more points than the team’s “Big 3?”
- Speaking of which, what a great trade-value game for White and Drummond! While I’m still not sure if this front office will do anything over the next week, games like last night could make moving both White and Drummond all the more likely. White provided the exact kind of spark you’d want from him off the bench, shooting 7-13 for 20 points and a +19 performance. He attacked the Hornets’ defense off the dribble repeatedly, doing the bulk of his damage in the paint. For some teams who have been on the fence about investing in White, performances like that could tip them over the edge.
- At the same time, maybe those are the kinds of games that are making the Bulls think twice …
- As for Drummond, I have to imagine interested parties have been a bit confused about his lack of playing time in Chicago. The fact he fell out of the rotation surely wasn’t doing his trade value any favors, but last night’s swift 15 points and 11 rebounds may calm some nerves. We know the big man market is pretty hot right now, and we also know Drummond is one of the cheaper options. I really do expect to see his name come up in some more rumors over the next week.
- I love me some Ayo Dosunmu. The Bulls’ youngster went a perfect 8-8 at the rim and finished 9-10 for 22 points. His teammates found him on a couple of nice cuts to the rim, but it was his ability to burn the Hornets’ defense in transition that helped him finish the night as the team’s top scorer. This is a big reason why I wouldn’t mind seeing the Bulls take a step back at this upcoming deadline. Giving even more minutes and opportunities to both Dosunmu and Patrick Williams during this second half could do wonders for their overall development.
- I miss you, Javonte.
- Everyone wants a piece of the Bulls. ESPN released six “big trades” they want to see at this deadline, and the Bulls were included in two of those deals. The first came from Bobby Marks and saw LaVine, Lonzo Ball, and Javonte Green head to Los Angeles for Russell Westbrook, Patrick Beverley, Max Christie, and unprotected first-rounders in 2027 and 2029. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: No. As valuable as those picks are perceived by some, they are (1) too far in the future and (2) not enough for LaVine. Heck, one of those picks needs to be included just to get off Westbrook’s contract! That means, technically, LaVine is being dealt for ONE first-rounder. Gross.
- The second trade that included Chicago came via Andre’ Snellings who had Lonzo Ball and Coby White going to Toronto for Fred VanVleet and Malachi Flynn. I don’t see a world where Toronto does this, but I can certainly see a world where the Bulls do. While there are questions about having to pay VanVleet, he fills a big hole in both the facilitating and 3-point shooting departments. And, at 28 years old, he can still fit into some sort of organizational re-design.
- Some folks may bicker about DeMar DeRozan’s All-Star selection this season, and I can likely understand some of the reasons why. However, I remain extremely happy for him. Despite the team’s dip this season, DeRozan has continued to be one of the most efficient and reliable scorers in the NBA. He’s also passed several career milestones this year, and it only feels right for him to be recognized with his sixth All-Star nod. The coaches knew he deserved this special acknowledgment.
- HAPPY MJ DAY, EVERYONE!
- Is that good?
- Even the dictionary is celebrating!
- Bring. Them. To. Me.
- I mean … probably.