The Chicago Bulls still have not made any moves as the 2017 NBA Trade Deadline grows closer. Is this a good or bad thing for the organization?
It is all quiet on the Midwestern front as of Wednesday afternoon, with the Chicago Bulls having yet to engage in any trades. With the 2017 NBA Trade Deadline only 24 hours away, many fans are wondering if there will be any movement, period.
However, there are still potential discussions the front office could get into, particularly concerning group packages. For example, it has been reported that they are happy to shop Nikola Mirotic around, a guy who unfortunately has been struggling for some time now.
So far this season, the 26-year-old is only averaging 9.0 points and 5.1 rebounds a game in 22.5 minutes. He is also shooting a mere 29.9 percent from downtown, something the Bulls were hoping would become his forte.
Other fringe players such as Bobby Portis and Doug McDermott, who have perhaps shown flashes of potential here and there, but have not exactly panned out to be the guys Chicago was hoping they could blossom into.
The Bulls certainly have pieces they could move, it is just a matter of whether or not they will. Which, in large part, depends on who they think they could get in return.
It was previously suggested that Chicago was interested in Jahlil Okafor, someone who the Philadelphia 76ers have been vocal about wanting to trade away. However, it would be hard to imagine the 76ers being fine with taking less than they give, leaving Butler as the Bulls’ only real bargaining chip.
So what if Chicago does remain as is?
Well, there are definitely pros and cons.
On the one hand, it seems pretty silly to make moves just to be able to say you did so. If the organization wanted to get rid of Butler and/or could put together a packaged deal with the right return, then by all means, trade away.
However, with general manager Gar Forman and vice president John Paxson having made it clear they are not even taking calls about Butler, and nothing seemingly coming together for guys like Mirotic and Gibson, why should the Bulls partake in the deadline chaos?
There is also the fact that as of right now, Chicago are slated to make the postseason. The Bulls are seventh in the Eastern Conference (one game out of sixth) with a 28-29 record and they are definitely well in the running to continue their playoff push. So while they may not currently be championship contenders, they are not exactly at the bottom of the barrel either.
Plus it has to be noted that bringing aboard new guys means time wasted on chemistry needing to be developed and trust having to be earned. Although the team has dealt with its fair share of drama already this year, at least there is now a level of on-court comfort among everyone.
However, without wheeling and dealing, things remain well… status quo. In the Bulls’ case that’s not terrible, but it’s definitely not great either. A level of mediocrity, at best.
Yes, Butler is having a fantastic year. Averaging 24.5 points, 6.3 rebounds and 5.0 assists per contest in 36.6 minutes, the 27-year-old has clearly found his groove. Newfound bestie Dwyane Wade is not doing half bad either, recording an average of 19.1 points, 4.5 rebounds and 3.8 assists in 30.4 minutes per game.
But there have been health concerns regarding the entire squad.