The Chicago Bulls seem poised to move on from guard Coby White ahead of his fourth NBA season. Could they target his fellow 2019 draftee, Cam Reddish, in a trade with the rival New York Knicks this offseason?
Rather than exploring a rookie-scale contract extension over the summer, White will likely play out the final year of his contract. What happens after that is anyone’s guess.
The 22-year-old could perform well enough next season to reinstill confidence in him beyond next season. But will that opportunity come with the Bulls following what should be his first healthy offseason?
Some are Seeing Reddish
The hosts of “Locked On Bulls” have an idea of what White could be used to bring back in a potential deal. While neither is willing to force a deal just to get something, both think a move is the best path for both White and the Bulls.
“I’m talking about just for a player…I thought of Cam Reddish. Let’s see if he’s actually got something or if he’s really just a guy. If he is, we traded Coby for the same dude and we got the same thing.”
Marc Berman of The New York Post reported that Knicks head coach Tom Thibodeau never wanted to trade for him. The 6-foot-8 wing appeared in just 15 games post-trade as an AC joint injury to his right shoulder knocked him out for the remainder of the campaign.
Reddish struggled with consistency in Atlanta on top of dealing with injuries including an Achilles injury that kept him out of all but 26 regular-season games and four playoff contests during the 2021 season.
Still, Reddish’s length and 7-foot-1 wingspan allow him to play (and defend) multiple positions whereas White struggles to stay in front of guards and doesn’t have great length.
White Not Long for Chicago
White is coming off of a season in which he shot career-highs from the floor (43.3%) and from beyond the arc (38.3%). For a Bulls team that ranked 30th in three-point attempts during the regular season despite being efficient when they did take them.
The former North Carolina Tar Heel never showed the consistency to match that efficiency, though.
That point was made painfully clear in the postseason where White’s struggles from beyond the arc stood out. The Bulls’ sixth man, connected just 27.9% of his triples against the Milwaukee Bucks in their first-round playoff series.
The biggest drawback from White is that, if he is not hitting shots, he does not offer much else on a consistent basis, though, he is capable.
He averaged just 2.9 assists last season and his defensive rating has gotten worse every season topping out in the 52nd percentile in the 2021 season, per Cleaning The Glass.
White’s value depends on which side is looking at him, explained Pat.
“It really depends on what the [other] team sees in him. There could be a team going into a slight rebuild…that has a lot of time before they’re near even competing for a playoff spot that may look at Coby and say…we’re going to see if he can become a consistent player.”
Perhaps need will meet with opportunity and the Bulls can get the wing they need while White adds more youth and another perimeter shooting threat to the Knicks guard rotation.
Reddish has Been a Target
Reddish was on the Bulls’ radar ahead of the draft in 2019 along with his former Hawks teammate, De’Andre Hunter, White, and Memphis Grizzlies guard Jarrett Culver who was drafted by the Minnesota Timberwolves.
The Bulls were also urged to pursue Reddish ahead of last season’s trade deadline by Bleacher Report’s Zach Buckley.
White simply has not shown the two-way potential that Reddish has. The latter averaged just 6.1 points and 1.4 rebounds with the Knicks. But his defensive rating did rank in the 93rd percentile during that injury-shortened ‘21 season, per Cleaning The Glass.
Even if he is healthier going forward, getting him to play disciplined has been a challenge.
A change of scenery (another in Reddish’s case) could end up working out for everyone.