Bulls ‘Should Be’ the Landing Spot For 4-Time All-NBA Big Man

Getty Billy Donovan

The Chicago Bulls might be in the market for a new big man this offseason. We’ve heard and written about a handful of names, but the one that would make the biggest splash is Utah Jazz star Rudy Gobert.

A few weeks ago, Brian Geltzeiler of Hoops Critic was a guest on 670 The Score’s Bernstein and Rahimi and he talked up a potential trade between the Bulls and Jazz that would land Gobert in Chicago.

Now there’s another hoops writer calling for a similar deal. With rumors swirling that the Dallas Mavericks and Toronto Raptors will have interest in trading for Gobert, CBS Sports’ Sam Quinn took to Twitter to remind everyone the team the Frenchman should be traded to–if Utah wants to move the 3-time Defensive Player of the Year and 4-time All-NBA selection–is the Bulls.

Would the Bulls Trade Patrick Williams?

Bulls fans may not agree with the package Quinn has come up with considering it includes Nikola Vucevic, Patrick Williams and picks.

There should be an understanding that Vucevic would likely be included in a deal for Gobert, but parting ways with Williams is a little scary. The Bulls are already power-forward deficient.

Trading away Williams would remove the only true power forward on the team. Even more concerning, Williams is the biggest piece of the Bulls’ future.

The No. 4 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft was a starter throughout his rookie season. He had a strong summer before badly spraining his ankle and missing training camp.

Williams was back in time for opening night this season, but he injured his wrist in the fifth game of the season and didn’t return until the last week in March. Williams has been showing the progress and flashes of the kind of player the Bulls hope he becomes in the last three games.

Over that span, Williams has averaged 9.3 points, 8.3 rebounds, 1.3 blocks and 1 steal per game while making 75% of his threes (3-for-4) and shooting 66.6% overall. Williams’ production and impact has led to his longest stint of minutes since his return.

He played an average of 30.6 minutes per game in those contests. More than the numbers, Williams is making an impact on the floor. Against the Miami Heat on Saturday, Williams had a sequence in the second half that featured two blocked shots and a transition basket.

If Chicago continues to see this sort of play from him the rest of the season and in the playoffs, any team would be hard-pressed to pry him out of the Windy City.

The Bulls Don’t Have Much in the Way of Picks to Offer

The “picks” portion of the trade concept might also be problematic. Because of the trade the Bulls swung with the Orlando Magic last season to get Vucevic, they don’t have a first-round pick in 2022.

They would have had the Portland Trail Blazers’ selection if they missed the Draft Lottery, but things have been tough in Rip City so they’ll be keeping that pick. It’s unclear if the Jazz would be willing to wait a year or two for a pick the Bulls can send their way.

While obviously not of as much value, Coby White seems like a much more realistic companion piece for a Vucevic trade. That offer probably won’t get it done for Utah which might push Chicago out of contention for Gobert.

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