Thursday, May 23, 2024

The Bulls’ Best Offer With Cleveland Finding “New Home” For All-Star Guard


The Cleveland Cavaliers were eliminated last week from the NBA Playoffs, falling 1-4 to the top-seeded Boston Celtics. Within hours of the final result, several reports spiraled out of Cleveland involving the possible dismissal of their head coach, J.B. Bickerstaff, and the potential separation of their All-Star duo in the backcourt. This would shake things up in the Eastern Conference, the Cavaliers representing one of the better young teams that battled with injuries down the stretch. When healthy, Donovan Mitchell has shown top-ten potential leaguewide, and at only 24 years old, Darius Garland already has one All-Star nod and is destined to stack more in the coming seasons. Can Chicago capitalize on Cleveland’s imminent breakup, and who can they poach to build their future?

Bring Garland To Pair With Coby White

Garland has had an inconsistent career, showing flashes of stardom but also disappearing for stretches of games. This postseason, until Mitchell was sidelined due to injury, the former Vanderbilt point guard was primarily invisible for the Cavaliers. He only scored 20 or more points in three out of his 12 outings, shooting just over 51% from the field in those games, including just 36% from three-point land. Considering he’s their second-best player and a former All-Star, his production needs to be more consistent in the postseason.

Averaging nearly 19 points and seven assists per game throughout his five-year career, Garland would become the Bulls’ first true point guard since Lonzo Ball’s injury three seasons ago. During that campaign, Chicago finished with its best standing in seven years and made its lone postseason appearance in nine. The ideal trade would see Ball and assets heading to Cleveland in exchange for the disgruntled All-Star guard. DeMar DeRozan could even execute a sign-and-trade, although his free agency seems to be a two-man race between the Bulls and Lakers at this stage. Pairing White and Garland would give the Bulls two 37% or higher three-point threats in the backcourt, opening up space for Nikola Vucevic’s post-game to make a return and the slashing abilities of DeRozan, Dosunmu, and Craig to flourish.

Sell The Farm For Donovan Mitchell

If Donovan Mitchell is on the move for the Cavaliers rather than Garland, Chicago must spare no expense to bring the superstar to the organization. He’d be the highest-profile star the Bulls have boasted since Derrick Rose; the 27-year-old has made the All-Star team five years in a row. This one appears less likely, mainly due to Mitchell’s desire to chase a championship, something he already made apparent once with his demand out of Utah several seasons ago.

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Mitchell would have no evidence to support Chicago being more championship-ready than Cleveland. Still, perhaps with a better coaching staff and a more established franchise, they could pursue one around the superstar shooting guard. With Zach LaVine’s inevitable departure and DeRozan’s expired contract, Bulls’ fans would be more than ecstatic to see a true young superstar take the place of their All-Star duo over the past three seasons.

Does Chicago stand a chance at Darius Garland or Donovan Mitchell if the rumors are true and the backcourt is breaking up? It’ll be one of many decisions the franchise will have to make in a summer destined for significant changes.


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May 23, 2024 5:17 pm

Trade Ball for anything. Maybe they could get a 3rd round pick…..ya I know there’s only 2 rounds …so what … ball is worthless

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