NBA Mock Draft Roundup: One Name Keeps Popping Up for the Bulls

Miami Heat Mock Draft
Miami Heat Mock Draft

The Chicago Bulls should be in the film room growing a five o’clock shadow. The only reason they should be let out and handed a razor is to take in the Draft Combine festivities over at Wintrust Arena. Otherwise, roll the tape!

Draft season is officially upon us, and it’s a big one for Arturas Karnisovas and Marc Eversley. Not only is their team stuck in the mud after back-to-back losing seasons, but this year will mark only their third first-round pick since taking over the franchise. Even if this prospect pool is considered one of the most underwhelming of the last decade, every draft features a few diamonds in the rough. The Bulls’ job is to snatch that diamond at No. 11.

As we inch closer and closer to the big night, mock drafts will be flooding our feeds. It can be hard to keep up with all the projections, so we plan to compile the mocks from top analysts every couple of weeks. The mission is to see if there is any consensus on which way the Bulls might go on June 26th.

Ron Holland, who is a potential prospect for the Chicago Bulls
© Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Bulls Mock Draft Roundup

Isaiah Collier
ESPN (Jonathan Givony & Jeremy Woo)
The Athletic (Sam Vecenie)
SBNation (Ricky O’Donnell)

Isaiah Collier was the most popular pick for Chicago in recent mocks. On the one hand, we should feel ecstatic about the possibility of the Bulls grabbing the USC guard. Collier sat among the top names in this draft class heading into the college basketball season. In fact, ESPN even had him ranked as the No. 1 prospect in November of 2023!

On the other hand, he’s stumbled down the board for a reason. Collier’s freshman season at USC didn’t go as planned. The team finished an underwhelming 15-18 on the year and failed to make the NCAA Tournament after three straight appearances. The dominance many expected to see as an off-the-dribble scorer only came in waves, while both his defense and playmaking struggled.

Still, if Collier is sitting at No. 11, he’s a hard name to pass up on. The lottery is about betting on upside, and Collier has a tantalizing amount of that. He’s a six-foot-five guard with a huge 210-pound frame. Stopping Collier is difficult because of his stocky and strong frame, but he’s also an above-average ball-handler who can slice and dice his way to the rim.

In his one season at USC, Collier averaged 16.3 points, 4.3 assists, 2.9 rebounds, and 1.5 steals per game. His bulldozer mentality helped him shoot 49.0 percent from the field (and nearly 6.0 FTAs a night!), while his 3-pointer shot left something to be desired at 33.8 percent.

Some people aren’t going to like the idea of adding Collier after Coby White’s breakout. I get that. But (1) the two each offer a different skillset and (2) the Bulls simply aren’t in a position to draft for need. This is a best-player-available scenario, and Collier may 100 percent be that player at No. 11.

Cody Williams
Bleacher Report (Jonathan Wasserman)

Despite only appearing in one mock draft this time around, Williams is a name we’ve already started discussing. The Bulls are in desperate need of more size and length at the wing, and Williams provides plenty of that at six-foot-seven with a seven-foot-one wingspan.

Williams still has a way to go as an off-the-dribble shot creator, but he will arrive in the NBA with good finishing ability and a solid jump shot. He went 55.2 percent from the field during his time with Colorado, and this included a 41.5 percent clip from downtown (17-35). At the combine, he compared his game a bit to Brandon Ingram, who he noted is a fluid athlete who knows how to hunt his spots.

Williams also compared himself to Jaden McDaniels, who has quickly turned into one of the league’s top wing defenders. This might be precisely where Williams can make his biggest impact right away. Few players have his combination of length and mobility, and I’d expect to see him guard multiple positions right off the bat at the next level.

I like a lot of what I’ve watched/read about Williams. Unlike some of the other young names featured in these mock drafts, he seems like someone who already understands how to limit his mistakes. A rookie is always going to be a rookie, but Williams appears to have a pretty clear understanding of his game, which is a quality that reflects his brother on OKC (Jalen Williams).

Dalton Knecht
Yahoo Sports (Krysten Peek)

Dalton Knecht is already 23 years old. If anyone in this lottery is going to enter the league and knows how to make an immediate impact, it’s probably the pure bucket-getter out of Tennessee.

Knecht averaged 21.7 points per game with 4.9 rebounds during his 36 games with the Vols. He shot 45.8 percent from the field and 39.7 percent from long range on 6.5 attempts per game. Standing six-foot-six, he’s a big guard who can shoot over smaller defenders and absorb contact on tough drives to the rim. We don’t really have any reason to believe he shouldn’t be able to score at the pro level both on and off the ball.

The real question for Knecht centers around his long-term upside. Have we already seen the best version of him? Can he be anything more than a potential sparkplug shotmaker? The defense isn’t anything special, and he isn’t some kind of gifted playmaker either. For a team that needs some buckets, he’d be a fine grab. Would the Bulls think about it with Zach LaVine likely headed elsewhere sooner rather than later?

Ron Holland
CBS Sports (Kyle Boone)

Ron Holland is one of my favorite players in this draft, and I expect him to go well before Adam Silver calls the Bulls’ name on draft night. I wrote more about him last week, so I’ll drop a snippet from that post below and encourage you to read the rest!

I’m a big Ron Holland guy. While he only appeared in 15 games for the G-League Ignite this season due to a thumb injury, the young wing had his moments. He averaged 18.5 points, 6.7 rebounds, 2.8 assists, 2.1 steals on 47.4 percent shooting from the field against grown men. And he is still just 18 years old!

A six-foot-six wing with a strong build, Holland is the most explosive player on this list. He is a downhill menace who can rise for the poster jam or finesse his way into an acrobatic finish. Holland shows extreme promise as a crafty ball-handler who simply knows how to set himself up for a decisive drive into the paint. This guy will be able to get buckets at the next level, and the Chicago Bulls could sure use his flare with the Zach LaVine era likely over.

More from that article here!

written by

Elias Schuster is the Lead Chicago Bulls writer at Bleacher Nation. He started with BN full-time in 2019 immediately after graduating from the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign with a degree in Journalism (yes, he started with the Jim Boylen Era). Since joining, Elias has been the driving force behind Bulls and NBA content for both the site and social accounts. You can follow him on Twitter/X @Schuster_Elias.

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