According to Fadeaway World, the Chicago Bulls have multiple options as far as draft-day trades are concerned, including one that could allow them to acquire Paul George from the Los Angeles Clippers for three of their core players — guard Zach LaVine, power forward Lauri Markkanen, and small forward Thaddeus Young.
As explained by the publication on Tuesday, George’s “meltdown” in this year’s playoffs should not define his career as a player, especially since he has had previously had MVP-caliber seasons. He also played solidly during the 2019-20 regular season as he and Kawhi Leonard led the Clippers (49-23) to the second-best record in the Western Conference.
In his first season in Los Angeles, the six-time All-Star averaged 21.5 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 3.9 assists per game while shooting 43.9 percent from the field and 41.2 percent from beyond the arc, according to Basketball-Reference.
Although Fadeaway World described George as an “aging” star at 30 years old, the site stressed that this also means his value in the trade market might not be as high as it used to be, hence the suggestion that the Bulls “strike while the iron is hot” and acquire him for three key players. The former Fresno State standout was also described as an “extremely smooth scorer” and a solid playmaker who could help Chicago in its rebuild.
As for the Clippers, the outlet speculated that if the hypothetical deal pushes forward, LaVine and Markkanen could “fit seamlessly” alongside Leonard in the team’s starting lineup.
“LaVine’s game is tailor-made for the playoff game: LaVine is a great creator on the offensive end, being one of the few bright spots for the Bulls in a [poor] season. He could be a secondary star behind Kawhi Leonard, like Paul George. Markkanen is a young big man who could develop into a shooting big similar to [Danilo] Gallinari or [Kristaps] Porzingis.”
As the two youngsters’ lack of defense might be a drawback for the Clippers, Fadeaway World pointed out that Young’s defensive ability as a veteran role player could partly make up for this deficiency.
“This package would give the Clippers a decent package for a star who underperformed when it matters most,” the site concluded.
The aforementioned trade idea involving George is not the only one that could allow the Bulls to acquire a legitimate superstar in the offseason. During the playoffs, it was suggested that Chicago could make an offer for Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid if it wants to return to the playoffs in the 2020-21 campaign.