The Chicago Bulls have held on to Zach LaVine. But their work isn’t done and there are plenty more holes to fill on this roster.
The Chicago Bulls landed the biggest prize of the offseason so far, retaining Zach LaVine to a five-year deal worth $215.2 million. LaVine is coming off a season in which he averaged 24.4 points, 4.6 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game on a 60.5 true shooting percentage.
LaVine offensive dynamism as a hyper-efficient off-ball threat and complementary creator helped the Chicago Bulls reach the playoffs for the first time in five seasons. However, they ran into a buzzsaw in the first round, getting eliminated by the Milwaukee Bucks in five games.
Keeping LaVine is huge for the Bulls but their roster has plenty of holes, even with hopefully healthy Lonzo Ball and Patrick Williams returning. The time for celebrating LaVine’s big deal is later, right now there is more work to do.
What other moves do the Bulls need to make after re-signing Zach LaVine?
The Bulls also added Andre Drummond on a two-year deal but still have some big questions in their frontcourt. The injury to Patrick Williams forced DeMar DeRozan to spend a lot of minutes at the 4 and Nikola Vucevic shot just 31.4 percent from beyond the arc last season. A lack of shooting, defensive versatility and lineup flexibility really hampered Chicago in the postseason.
Drummond is a nice backup option but he doesn’t really address any of those fundamental issues. Williams should hopefully be able to move back into the starting lineup but someone like T.J Warren would be another interesting option.
Warren hasn’t really played in two seasons, recovering from a left-foot fracture. But in his last full season, he averaged 19.8 points for the Pacers, shooting 53.6 percent from the field and 40.3 percent from beyond the arc. He has a preference for operating with the ball in his hands but, if healthy, his offense would give the Bulls a very different look at the 4. It’s not clear what the market will be for him but he’s been rumored to be a target for the Bulls.
Another thing on the checklist is finding a trade partner for Coby White. As Jason Patt made clear at Forbes, “Chicago doesn’t have to trade White as he becomes extension eligible this summer, but it’s smart to look at using him to try to find a better player…”
There should also be a handful of useful 3-and-D type wing and backcourt players Chicago could look at to add depth — Donte DiVincenzo, Cody and Caleb Martin.