Myles Turner would be great addition to the Bulls. Do they have enough to offer for him?
Many of the contenders in the Eastern Conference made moves to improve their chances being a contender for the NBA championship. From Atlanta trading for Dejounte Murray, the Cavaliers trading for Donovan Mitchell, the return of Ben Simmons for the Nets in addition to another year for some of the experienced teams in the conference such as Milwaukee, Miami, Boston, and Philadelphia.
As the Bulls try to make the playoffs for the consecutive years for the first time since 2014-2015, the Bulls still need to find some toughness particularly in defensive categories such as blocks and rebounds. The Bulls ranked 25th in blocks and 22nd in defensive rebounding last season. Many Bulls fans wish the the big men on the team could provide more in terms of defensive rebounding and blocks. In the playoff series lost to the Bucks last season, the Bucks had almost more than 50 defensive rebounds than the Bulls and Giannis Antetokounmpo averaged 28.6 points, 13.4 rebounds and 6.2 assists and had his way in the paint because of the lack of interior defensive presence.
If the Bulls want to go deep in the playoffs, they would need a big man to match up with the many talented big men in the Eastern Conference. So what about the Pacers Myles Turner? Turner is a 26-year old center who has been mentioned in several trade rumors this summer and has several contenders for his services. Turner has career averages of 12.7 points, 6.7 rebounds and 2.3 blocks and has shot 35% from three-point range. Also, he has led the league in blocked shots twice.
Reportedly, the Pacers are asking for a lot in return for Turner and will continue to field offers for the young center. The Pacers are coming off a 25-57 season and look to be tanking this season to get a high lottery pick in a draft that is projected to be loaded with talent. The Pacers traded Malcolm Brogdon this summer and his $22.6 million salary to the Celtics for young players and a draft pick. The Pacers are looking for young cheap players and to shed salary so that they could be possible free agent destination in the future.
So who would the Bulls dangle in a trade for Myles Turner? The most obvious candidate would be Nikola Vucevic. Vucevic is on the last year of his deal which would be attractive to the Pacers because they do not want any long-term salary commitments and could possible get some draft picks that the Bulls have to offer. If the Pacers made the trade before the NBA trade deadline, they could even try to trade Vucevic to another team that is looking for an offensive-minded center who has some playoff experience.
Some of the concerns teams have with Myles Turner is that he is coming off a foot injury that limited him to 42 games last year. The year before he was limited to 47 games due to an injury to his toe. Also, he is not quite the scorer that Vucevic would be and has never averaged more than 14 points per game. However, most teams who are trading for Myles Turner see his ability to defend and provide spacing with his ability to make shoot from the perimeter.
The Bulls do not have many options on the roster to improve their defense and one of their best perimeter defenders Lonzo Ball will miss significant time with a knee injury. Can general manager Arturas Karnisovas pull off another deal like he did with acquisition of Demar Derozan and Lonzo Ball? If the Bulls want to be a contender, then they need to address the need for a defensive presence in the front court and Myles Turner is the ideal player to fill the gap.
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