The Chicago Bulls and their offseason moves have upgraded the roster and put them into contention for an NBA championship. It has been a long time coming and the roster is finally complete with skilled post players, shooters, offensive creators, veterans, and oh yeah, a healthy Derrick Rose. They should have no excuse for coming up short this season.
Lets take a detailed look at what the Bulls have done to better the team.
First and foremost: Healthy Derrick Rose
The Bulls were ready to compete for a title last season but unfortunately superstar guard, Derrick Rose, went down with yet another injury. In a playoff series lost against the Washington Wizards, it was obvious that the team missed the scoring of Rose.
The roster was full of players that could not create their own offense and also no one to compete against the Wizards guards, John Wall and Bradley Beal. This season, the Bulls are equipped with their high-octane guard to whip through defenses and provide scoring when needed.
From the looks of the USA games and practices, Rose is back to MVP form and also looks faster and stronger. It is safe to say there are only about 5 unstoppable players in the NBA and Derrick Rose is definitely one of those players.
Gasol is one of the most offensively skilled post players in the NBA. He has the ability to play inside out and gives the Bulls a traditional post player, which is something they had in Carlos Boozer but better. Gasol brings a championship pedigree to the Bulls; something no one else on the roster has.
In 2009 when the Los Angeles Lakers won the NBA championship, it was argued that he may be the best big man in the NBA. Since then he’s had health issues along with team management issues which deterred his game play. Playing for Tim Thibodeau should go in his favor because he is no stranger to feeding the post. Boozer got a lot of touches in a Bulls uniform and it should be the same for Gasol, except more efficient. Gasol’s addition also gives the Bulls a player that Derrick Rose can implement the pick and roll with.
The beauty of that is Gasol has exceptional shooting ability as well as the length to finish over defenders with no problem as evident in his previous years with the Lakers. The Bulls definitely got a gem in Gasol.
Using the amnesty clause on Carlos Boozer
Carlos Boozer is disliked heavily within the Bulls organization especially by the fans. What I will say is Boozer is not a bad player, he’s just not what the Bulls need. Boozer is a highly skilled offensive player, actually better than most at his position, unfortunately he cant guard a sixth grader and he’s probably not over 6’9.
When the Bulls acquired Boozer, I thought it would be a perfect fit because his playing style is different than their existing big guys in Joakim Noah and Taj Gibson. I thought it would give them someone that could step out and knock down jumpers, bang with players in the paint, provide decent post play and another player with high IQ; which it was. T
hen they began to compete in playoff games and it became obvious how terrible of a defender he was and how much he struggled playing against taller defenders. Obviously Gasol isn’t a top-notch defender but his length gives him the ability to at least contest shots and score over defenders that are taller than him, which isn’t likely since Gasol stands 7’2. Maybe an amnesty was a little harsh but it was the pro-absorbing and lucrative contract that forced the efforts to get rid of him. His efforts with the Bulls equated to half of what the contract was worth.
Boozer definitely did good things for the Bulls but never enough to match his contract or take his team to the next level given the fact that he was the second scoring option at times. Good luck in LA!
Doug McDermott looked like a season veteran in summer league! Although it was summer league and the competition doesn’t compare to experienced players, his game is easily transferable to an actual NBA game. His ability to shoot is phenomenal and exactly what Rose needs.
There is a thriving comparison to Kyle Korver but did you know he can put the ball on the floor and create his own shot? Something that Korver doesn’t do often but still has found a way to maintain success as solely a shooter. If McDermott can score the way he did in the summer league against real NBA competition, it wont be long before he is a starter and Rose’s favorite go to guy. He is a hard-nose guy that will prove he is more than just a spot up shooter; he is a guy that will give you McBuckets in anyway possible.
Finally Coming Over Eh?
The Bulls finally brought over their foreign sensation, Nikola Mirotic. Mirotic is another scorer to add to the renewed offensive firepower of the Bulls. What we do know about him is he can score from anywhere on the court which have driven comparisons to Dirk Nowitzki.
If he lives up to his comparison, the Bulls will win championships for years to come. He was dominant overseas using his long frame to kill defenders in many ways whether its using special moves to get past defenders, taking smaller guys to the post, or even knocking down jump shots from anywhere on the court with distancing range.
He will be great firepower for the Bulls to relieve the likes of probably Dunleavy and Gasol at times. There’s not much to say about him playing against NBA competition or even competition in the United States but potentially this guy could be great against anyone.
Aaron Brooks has been a good player in the NBA for several teams and the Bulls happen to be his next pit stop. In his prime, he was a great scorer with exceptional range and was also a starting point guard at one point. With several years of experience under his belt, he is going to come to the Bulls and give them more veteran presence and scoring especially with the departure of Dj Augustin.
He is also a pretty good three point shooter which is good because can play shooting guard at times and roam around in search open three pointers. His versatility at the guard position is essential because it allows the Bulls to throw different line-ups at defenses. Since they have 3 point guards, its unclear as to how much he will play but when given the opportunity he wont disappoint.
Given the fact the Bulls have made very necessary moves, they are definitely in contention for the championship. The Bulls have the right grouping to contend in the Eastern Conference and it may be a clear path for the Chicago Bulls to compete in the NBA Finals. The excitement around the city of Chicago is exhilarating and its all because of the moves the organization has made this offseason.