Bulls: Stuck in Limbo? The Dilemma of Winning vs. Rebuilding


Jul 21, 2023

In recent NBA news, the New York Knicks approached the Chicago Bulls this summer with interest in Zach LaVine. However, The Athletic reported that the asking price was too high, stalling any potential deals. Apparently, the teams didn’t come close to striking an agreement.

Focusing on the Bulls, a team seemingly prepared to maintain their current roster, including LaVine, Demar DeRozan, and Nikola Vucevic, all eyes are on their projected win total for the 2023-24 season. Per the FanDuel Sportsbook, the Bulls’ expected total is a modest 36.5. Further, the odds for the Bulls making a significant impact in the Eastern Conference title race are set at a staggering +6500.

The pressing question facing basketball analysts and fans is: what’s the direction of this Chicago franchise?

The team seems to be on the retreat since Lonzo Ball’s injury, and the team’s performances have been in a downward spiral. Even before this setback, there were indications that Chicago was perhaps slightly overrated. If we rewind two years, the Bulls didn’t perform well against the top teams in the Eastern and Western Conferences.

The DeRozan-LaVine partnership, which had always appeared somewhat shaky, has been disappointing. As we examine the Central Division, it’s clear that teams like the Milwaukee Bucks and the Cleveland Cavaliers hold an upper hand over the Bulls. Even upstart teams like the Indiana Pacers and Detroit Pistons pose significant challenges.

The overall sentiment seems to be leaning toward the possibility that the Bulls are more likely to end up in the last place than make it to the playoffs.

In the NBA, teams are either winning or rebuilding and unfortunately for the Bulls, they seem to be stuck in an awkward middle ground – a position any team would want to avoid.

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Thumbnail photo via John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

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