The Chicago Bulls are in the thick of the NBA offseason as rumors continue to swirl about the draft and free agency. The first big decision the Bulls will have to make will be on what they intend to do with the 18th overall pick.
Rumors have surfaced that the Bulls have been exploring trading the 18th overall pick if it means they can add a veteran contributor. The Bulls could also package the pick in hopes of trying to land an even bigger contributor.
Chicago has also said to be interested in trying to land Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert and whoever the Bulls take with that 18th pick could be included in any possible trade there.
Should the Bulls Trade the Pick?
The draft is just a little over a week away and the Bulls are running out of time on deciding what they want to do. Regardless the Bulls will have to make the pick at 18 and any trade would have to be made after the draft.
During the most recent episode of NBC Sports Chicago’s Bulls Talk Podcast K.C. Johnson warned the Bulls about trading the pick.
“Their(Bulls) are obviously in a win-now mode,” said Johnson, “they’ve pushed some chips in to get aggressive and overhaul the rosters as they have. But I also feel like you can’t have the cupboards completely dry for the future.”
“This is the way I view this roster is they’ve got significant money tied into some important veterans and their core like Vuc, DeMar, and hopefully Zach LaVine. Then you kind of also need to prepare for like when those guys age out or contract out. I mean Vuc is up after next year, he’s extension eligible this summer, and I kind of view Lonzo, Patrick Williams, Ayo, and then this pick as that next wave of replenishing the cupboards, and then Zach would be the straddle piece cause he’s 27 and entering his prime.”
It’s a good point by Johnson, the last thing the Bulls want is to be stuck in a current situation like the Lakers with no youth on the roster. The biggest piece of that scenario though is re-signing LaVine and the Bulls might have gotten some good news on that front on Tuesday.
According to a June 14 story from Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer, LaVine is expected to re-sign with the Bulls when he becomes a free agent on June 30. The Bulls can offer LaVine a max contract of five years at $212 million, while other teams can offer him four years at $157 million.
The Bulls have been inundated with rumors this summer about LaVine and the several teams that might pursue him in free agency. The Lakers, Spurs, Mavericks, and Blazers were all mentioned to have interest in LaVine and could still take a swing at him when he does become a free agent.
While it’s certainly a good report for the Bulls, the team still has to seal the deal. A lot can change in two weeks and the Bulls don’t want to take LaVine for granted.