There is not a lot to learn about the Chicago Bulls during what was a confusing NBA season. Are the Chicago Bulls a team looking to rebuild or contend? Bulls’ fans have become confused by the direction of the team. Nothing explains that further than the apathetic feelings displayed when the Bulls clinched a playoff spot.
People are content with the Chicago Bulls being in the postseason, but no overly excited. That is because many of them wanted the club to be in a full rebuild. Knowing that the Bulls are not expected to go farther than the second round. Their general idea is why not start stripping down the team, get into the draft lottery and have a chance at one of the top three draft picks. Somewhere along the line, any thought of the younger Bulls’ players gaining playoff experience has not been a consideration.
It is important for their development, and for the Chicago Bulls to see what they have in the likes of Bobby Portis, Denzel Valentine, and Paul Zipser. Moreover, the NBA playoffs is the best way to get a gauge on what they can do. Strong contributions from each of them will propel the Bulls past the Boston Celtics in their best-of-seven series.
If the Bulls advance past, that may lead them to believe they are a team on the rise — which would alter their offseason strategy.
The Chicago Bulls series with the Boston Celtics took a turn on Saturday night.
The sister of Isaiah Thomas was killed in a one-car accident early Saturday morning. https://t.co/MTlS4mx03L
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) April 16, 2017
The status of Celtics’ star Isaiah Thomas s up in the air after the reported motor vehicle death (courtesy of KIRO-7 ABC News) of his sister Chyna Thomas. If Thomas plays, he will do so with a heavy heart. If he does not, it could change the outcome of the series. Either way, with the circumstances as they are, the advantage goes to the Bulls.
Winning the series, or being competitive could give the Bulls the sense that they are a step closer to a contention than most realize. As previously mentioned, that would alter their offseason plans if it happens — especially with the Cleveland Cavaliers starting to look vulnerable these days.
If the Chicago Bulls think they are close to being contenders, look for them to have some interest in Los Angeles Clippers’ star Blake Griffin. Griffin will be a free agent at the end of the season may be tempted to play elsewhere if the Clippers keeps playing disappointing basketball.
True signs of the Clippers’ struggles were on display in Game 1 of their best-of-seven series against the Utah Jazz. The Clippers lost to the Jazz 97-95 on a Joe Johnson last-second shot. While there is no shame to lose to the up and coming Jazz team, Utah was playing without Rudy Gobert, who hyperextended his knee on the first play of the game.
The Clippers’ loss to the Jazz could be the beginning of the end for the team once dubbed as “Lob City.” Not only is Blake Griffin a free agent, but so are Chris Paul and J.J. Reddick. It is possible that the Bulls could take full advantage of the Clippers’ trouble and try to lure at least one of them to Chicago.
Despite signing Dwyane Wade and Rajon Rondo to big monetary contracts, the Chicago Bulls will be one of the few teams with financial flexibility. If they can convince Blake Griffin or Chris Paul that the road to a championship is easier in the Eastern Conference, the Bulls would have a legitimate shot at one of them.
The notion that the Bulls could reach out to Blake Griffin or Chris Paul is not far fetched. The franchise has a slightly better situation than the Clippers, just based on the conference they play in and that the cupboard is not bare. That is if Jimmy Butler does not get traded. This idea could backfire if the Bulls’ young players struggle and the Bulls were to be swept by the Celtics. No one believes that will happen, especially with Isaiah Thomas having a heavy heart.
[Featured Images by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images]