Patrick Beverley Considered ‘Sleeper’ Target for Ex-Bulls Coach

Patrick Beverley, Chicago Bulls

Getty Patrick Beverley #21 of the Chicago Bulls.

It was clear that the Chicago Bulls needed what Patrick Beverley gave them.

The questions then become do the Bulls offer Beverley what he needs at this point in his career and, if the answer is no, where will he land this offseason?

“Before weighing the merits of a possible Patrick Beverley pursuit, let’s address that elephant in the room: His 2022-23 season was rough,” wrote Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report on June 8 listing Beverly among his ‘sleeper’ targets for the New York Knicks in free agency. “Maybe he just needs a change of scenery to get himself back on track.”

Beverly averaged 6.2 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 2.9 assists this past season while shooting 40.0% from the floor and 33.5% from beyond the arc. The rebounds and assists were his fewest since the 2021-22 season while the points were his fewest since his rookie season in 2012-13.

His 33.5% mark from deep is a career low while he also missed the postseason for the first time.

Beverley began the 2022-23 season with the Los Angeles Lakers but was traded to the Orlando Magic at the trade deadline.

He secured his release and found his way to his hometown Bulls, helping guide them to a 14-9 finish to the regular season. Executive vice president of basketball operations Arturas Karnsovas has touted that finish and teammates like Coby White have specifically touted Beverley’s impact on them.

The Knicks are helmed by former Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau whose style would seemingly fit well with the outspoken Beverley. They also roster former Bulls star Derrick Rose, though he could have his $15.6 million option declined by the team after falling out of the rotation.

Finances May Get in the Way

The biggest apparent hurdle for the Bulls and Beverley trying to start the season together is Beverley’s expected asking price which the guard set at $13 million to start. Chicago is limited to the non-taxpayers midlevel exception which is worth $12.2 million in 2023-24, per Spotrac.

Even at a hometown discount, Beverley would likely account for too much of that to bring back with the team also needing to add some reliable three-point shooting and athletic size up front.

The hope for the Bulls would be that Beverley’s down season keeps his price in check.

Hawks Listed as Potential Patrick Beverley Landing Spot

There could be plenty of teams in need of Beverley’s brand of leadership this offseason including the Atlanta Hawks who went to the Eastern Conference Finals two seasons ago but have been bounced in the first round of the playoffs in each of the last two seasons.

“The Hawks can’t afford to be big spenders in free agency but could use a veteran point guard behind Trae Young and Dejounte Murray,” writes Greg Swartz of Bleacher Report in an article from June 11 identifying backup point guard options for Atlanta. “Beverley can still hit shots and defend at a high level in limited minutes.”

Perhaps the prevailing notion that Beverley can get back to hitting shots at a higher level is enough incentive for the Bulls to count on him next season.

Karnisovas has spoken of getting creative to address the Bulls’ needs this offseason but he has also been big on giving things time to sort themselves out. Beverley could represent the best option for this team based on familiarity and what both sides have to offer each other.

Unless another team, one closer to contending for a title, comes calling.

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