Trade Deadline idea for Bulls: Pairing Brook Lopez with Robin
During their current road trip, the Chicago Bulls played against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Before Enes Kanter fractured his forearm, the Thunder played a “twin tower” pairing up front at times. Could the Bulls look to do that in acquiring Brook Lopez — Robin’s brother — from woeful Brooklyn?
Believe it or not, the Chicago Bulls can still pull it together and make a playoff run this year by just sharing the ball, getting more production from the young guys, and not fighting with each other on social media.
But if they can’t, and any of the current “Three Alphas” are fair game for a trade, Gar Forman might want to look at partnering Robin Lopez with his brother, Brook, and ship either Jimmy Butler or Dwyane Wade to the Brooklyn Nets in a blockbuster trade. Combining the comic book junkie brothers on the same team may provide good chemistry than keeping either of the two veteran Alphas if John Paxson is as allergic to headcases as he has appeared to be at times.
The trade may not net any draft picks in the exchange if Butler is traded, but they get a really good big man who elevates the front court to the level of the Steven Adams-Enes Kanter tandem if Brook is paired with his brother.
This season, Brook is currently averaging 20.2 points, 7.2 rebounds, 1.2 three-point shots per game, 1.7 blocks per game.
In the Hoiball system — which is not so different from the Stanford system the Lopez siblings grew up playing — Brook would fit better than Butler’s state of heavy usage, heavy shot making and low passing game.
If the Bulls truly begin to build a young shooting team around Rajon Rondo and back that up with veteran bigs who can also knock down mid-range and long range shots, the team will overcome the main weakness of every Hoiball team since Fred Hoiberg‘s Iowa State days: strong rebounding teams who clog the lane.
The Lopez brothers plus Cristiano Felicio could be augmented by rebounding guards such as Rondo and Michael Carter-Williams. That doesn’t sound too bad to me. Wide open lanes, strong rebounding everywhere and shooters developing just in time for a playoff run if the Bulls trade either Alpha not named Rondo.
Butler may not fit the long-term plans for the Bulls, given his Thibodeau-based training as an isolation-heavy offensive weapon instead of playing as an off-ball, steamrolling machine where no one can really stop him. His preference to walk up the ball is eating up minutes and touches because Hoiball is all about fast scores and movement traps.
Can Butler adjust by the end of the season to share the ball or will he regress to hero-ball come playoff time? Brook Lopez has the numbers to back his game if that is what it takes to convince Gar and Pax to take the plunge and retrofit the team by the 2017 trade deadline.
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