This morning, senior NBA writer for The Athletic, Sam Vecenie, wrote an article running down several teams leaguewide who could pounce on the chance at landing two-time All-Star Zach LaVine and potential packages sent back to Chicago. Although he mocked ten possible deals with clubs ranging from title contenders to bottom-dwellers, one stands out as the most valuable to Chicago and makes the most sense for the future of the Windy City. The return would include a 21-year-old explosive point guard, which the Bulls have needed for several years, a 22-year-old center with plenty of potential, and a salary-cap filler 32-year-old guard that would likely be flipped elsewhere for more assets. What’s the potential trade, and how plausible is it that the Bulls can get it done?
Detroit Pistons Complete Their Backcourt
Detroit hasn’t seen the postseason since 2018, hasn’t had a winning season since 2015, and has averaged only 20 wins in their last four campaigns. Head coach Dwane Casey was relieved of his duties this summer, and general manager Troy Weaver may be next on the list. He was hired in 2020, and since his arrival, the Pistons have only won 60 games over three years, have shown minimal improvement, and are off to a 2-10 start in 2023. Trading for a certified star might be his last effort to turn the franchise around.
Jaden Ivey would be the tough pull from this list, but with murmurs that he’s dissatisfied with his role on the team, it may be more welcomed than many imagine. Ivey has seen his role diminish significantly this season, coming off the bench in all eight appearances so far and averaging under 20 minutes per game, which is an abrupt change from 2022. Last season, he started in 73 of 74 games played and averaged north of 31 minutes per contest.
Bulls Get A Head Start On The Rebuild
Landing Jaden Ivey would be a significant acquisition for the Chicago Bulls and someone they could build a future around. The top-five pick in 2022 is already disgruntled in his sophomore season, and even though he needs to improve his efficiency, he was a player who averaged over 16 points and five assists per contest as a 20-year-old, and that’s hard to come by.
James Wiseman has yet to solidify himself as an NBA player but has shown sporadic flashes of the dominant big man he was in college. As a 22-year-old, he’s still got plenty of time to develop and is someone the Bulls could afford to invest in while he’s young and on a cheap contract. In his 22 starts a year ago, he averaged 12.7 points and 8.1 rebounds with over 50% shooting from the field and 25 minutes of action per night.
Joe Harris is a dangling piece in a deal to a contender, someone looking for extremely valuable three-point shooting in the postseason. At 32 years old, he would not be a part of a rebuild, and assuming the Bulls would also trade away DeMar DeRozan at a minimum, Chicago would not be battling for contention any time soon. Gaining any young flyers with potential or draft capital would be ideal for Harris.
Trading Zach LaVine away for two 22-year-old or younger solid talents with upside and future draft capital in the form of a future Joe Harris deal would jumpstart Chicago’s rebuild and rebrand the franchise around Ivey.
Is LaVine for Ivey too cheap of a pricetag for the 28-year-old star, or is this the best deal the Bulls will find around the Association?