Alex Caruso Sends Strong Message to Bulls Star Zach LaVine

Alex Caruso

Getty Images Alex Caruso

The Chicago Bulls have been busy during the 2022 NBA offseason. The team first drafted Dalen Terry out of Arizona with the 18th overall pick in the NBA Draft.

Shortly after the draft free agency got underway and the Bulls immediately went to work re-signing two-time all-star Zach LaVine to a max contract of five years $215 million. The Bulls also re-signed forward Derrick Jones Jr. to an inexpensive two-year contract.

Besides that, the Bulls also added veterans Andre Drummond and Goran Dragic on cheap contracts to try and bolster the roster. The Bulls’ offseason so far has played out exactly as the front office wanted with the main goal being continuity.

Excited to be Healthy

The main reason the front office opted to go with continuity this offseason is the Bulls were really good this past season when they were healthy. Chicago got off to a 27-13 start and was in first place in the Eastern Conference before injuries to LaVine, Lonzo Ball, and Alex Caruso derailed the season.

The Bulls stumbled to a 46-36 record down the stretch which dropped them to sixth place in the conference. Chicago would go on to be eliminated by the Milwaukee Bucks 4-1 in the first round of the playoffs.

The Bulls’ front office is hoping that continuity will be able to give them a full season of the start they had last season. Chicago’s players also seem to be excited about running it back this season.

Alex Caruso appeared on The Bulls Talk Podcast recently and said he’s excited to see what they can do this season.

“When we have our guys on the court, we’re a really good team,” Caruso said. “I think that’s anybody in the league. Any team that expects to be in the playoffs and play deep in the postseason, you take away two of your top players and then a couple others, one playing on 50 percent, the team is not going to be as good as it could be.

“So for me, I just know the continuity and I remember the chemistry we had early in the year when we were just playing off basically off talent. We hadn’t even developed some type of team character, you know, identity yet. We hadn’t even got into people trying to switch coverages and do stuff to us that was out of the norm. So I know how good we can be on an average night and I’m really excited to see how good we can be on our best night.”

Questions Remain

While it’s good to hear that the Bulls players are excited to run things back this season, the team still has some questions to answer. The biggest question is the heath of Ball’s knee and when he’ll be able to return to the court.

Head coach Billy Donovan recently said that Ball is making progress, but gave no insight on how close he is to a return. The Bulls do have depth in the backcourt, but after last season it’s hard to deny how important Ball is to the team’s success.

The Bulls also didn’t address two of their biggest weaknesses so far. Chicago still hasn’t added a rim protector and doesn’t have much three-point shooting.

There is still time for the Bulls to try and address those needs, but only time will tell if they’ll make any more moves before the season.

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