Sure Feels Like the Bulls Are Basing Their Entire Deadline Approach on ... Hope

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Sure Feels Like the Bulls Are Basing Their Entire Deadline Approach on … Hope

Chicago Bulls

With the NBA trade deadline less than 24 hours away, the Chicago Bulls’ rumors remain non-existent.

While that might be due – in part – to the front office’s preference to keep things close to the vest, the more likely reason is that they simply don’t plan on doing anything substantial. All we’ve heard is that – despite the Bulls’ lackluster record – rival teams have been turned away when inquiring about their All-Star-level talent. As for supporting cast members like Alex Caruso or Andre Drummond, the Bulls have been fielding calls, but the price tag for Caruso sounds extremely high and the return for Drummond may not be all that enticing.

At some point, though, this organization has to consider shuffling the cards. The product on the floor simply hasn’t been good enough to justify keeping the entirety of this roster intact. And I’m not sure why the front office doesn’t appear to recognize that, especially when head coach Billy Donovan gave us some clarity on how they are going about evaluating this team.

The Bulls’ head coach told The Athletic’s Darnell Mayberry earlier this week that the plan is for Arturas Karnisovas to evaluate the Bulls from last year’s trade deadline on.

“I don’t think that he would isolate eight or 10 games and not look at — like, I think Arturas, quite honestly, he’s looking at it from the All-Star break last year. Where I think we were, I don’t know, maybe tied for first or second going into the break. And then looking at the break from there. … So I think he’ll look and evaluate our team from after the All-Star break all the way through this.”

If that’s truly the case – and it should be considering how little roster turnover there has been – I’m not sure how this front office can continue to stand by “continuity.” The Bulls are 34-43 dating back to last season’s All-Star break, and that’s not including their swift five-game exit at the hands of the Milwaukee Bucks last postseason. They also haven’t been .500 or better since Nov. 7.

I don’t know about you, but if that’s the sample size I’m working with to evaluate this team, then there isn’t much of an argument to be made that keeping the status quo is best. We’re talking about a team that has been aggressively below average when the expectation has been to be anything but.

So, yeah, if Donovan is right, then the front office is pretty much basing their decision-making on hope rather than results. When you’re rebuilding, that’s completely a fine thing to do. When you talk about improving on 46 wins and a playoff berth … that’s pretty unacceptable.

Author: Elias Schuster

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