UPDATE 3/24/21 5:01 PM ET
The final two trades for the Bulls were all part of a package deal with the Wizards. The details are as follows
Details of the Celtics/Wizards/Bulls deal, per league sources:
Wizards get D. Gafford, C. Hutchinson
Celtics get L. Kornet, M. Wagner
Bulls get D. Theis, J. Green, T. Brown Jr. , $1.3m (from BOS) $250k (from WAS)
— Ryan McDonough (@McDNBA) March 25, 2021
The Bulls added Daniel Theis, Javonte Grenn, Troy Brown Jr., and cash considerations from both Boston and Washington. The Bulls sent out Daniel Gafford, Chandler Hutchison, and Luke Kornet. For in depth coverage on the addition of Troy Brown Jr click here. For in depth coverage on the addition of Daniel Theis continue reading below.
The NBA trade deadline has passed. We all thought the Bulls were done. The team had already completed two trades ahead of the deadline. Well, it looks like the front office wasn’t done just yet. In a deal announced after the deadline, it looks like one of the players acquired by the Bulls today is already on the move.
Mo Wagner goes to the Celtics, per sources. https://t.co/TPrzW9WqEd
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) March 25, 2021
In exchange for recently acquired center Mo Wagner the Bulls are going to receive Celtics center, Daniel Theis. Today the Bulls gave themselves a new starting and backup center. One of the areas the Bulls have struggled with this season is now fully secured. This team will have no lack of size and rim protection with new centers Nikola Vucevic and Daniel Theis.
Theis is having the best season of his career
In his fourth year in the league, Daniel Theis is having the best season of his short career. He has started in 37 games this season for the Celtics and averaged 24.5 minutes per game. In his time on the floor, he is averaging 9.5 PPG, 55.2 %FG, 5.2 RPG, & 1 BPG. Theis is having himself a pretty great season and he now will look to continue that behind Vucevic. There’s no need to worry about the Bulls center position anymore.
Remember my earlier Tweet about Bulls lacking rim protection?
— K.C. Johnson (@KCJHoop) March 25, 2021
This move was an upgrade from Mo Wagner and the Bulls knew that. The deal apparently was going to be bigger than just these two players. I guess the teams just ran out of time.
A three-team deal fell apart
It looks like the Cavaliers were going to be involved with this trade in some way. Presumably, all three teams couldn’t get the details sorted out ahead of the deadline and we were left with the Bulls and Celtics.
It's still unclear how big the Wagner-for-Theis deal is as of right now. Talks involved a third team and Javonte Green and Jeff Teague, per sources. Looks like luxury tax reduction for Celtics.
But Theis will be a Bull.
— K.C. Johnson (@KCJHoop) March 25, 2021
Sources have reported that Javonte Green was supposed to head to Chicago in this deal. When all of the cards fell it ended up just being a 1-for-1 swap with Wagner and Theis. Regardless of what could have been the Bulls have themselves their #2 center.
How will Theis fit with the Bulls?
Theis should pick up where he left off with the Celtics. Since the return from the All-Star break, Theis has been averaging 10.25 PPG & 6.25 RPG. He is going to bring that production off the bench which the Bulls need. Now that they have center Nikola Vucevic it’s not as desperate of a need. However, the Bulls bench will need to continue providing offense and this should help. The Bulls had gone through every center on the team this season and even played forward Thaddeus Young at the center position. The team no longer has to worry about who will be playing center in both the starting and backup positions. Look for Theis to contribute off the bench right away for this Bulls team.
The Bulls frontcourt should be dominant
The Bulls made some major changes in the frontcourt today. This new frontcourt will be a major upgrade from what was there before. Just take a look at the projected depth chart after the trades today.
Sato — Coby
LaVine — Temple
Williams — Brown Jr.
Thad — Markkanen
Vucevic — Theis
Still yearning for better guard play, but let's see how this group comes together — especially through this brutal stretch of games coming up.
— Mark K (@mkhoops) March 25, 2021
Having forwards Thaddeus Young and Patrick Williams pair up with Vucevic is big, literally. This group should be able to dominate the frontcourt and continue to be a high-scoring team. Throw in the combination of Theis and forward Lauri Markkanen coming off the bench and the Bulls would have scoring on all fronts. While we won’t see who will actually be in the starting lineup until all of those guys get here we can speculate a little bit. Maybe head coach Billy Donovan will want to see how Vucevic and Markkanen will work together. There’s a lot that still needs to play out.
One thing is for sure, the Bulls made some major upgrades today. It would have been nice to see a new PG added to the team but this was a great start. The Bulls have put themselves back on the map for free agents. Players will want to join a team with two All-Stars. The front office clearly knows what they are doing. Today further shows why they were brought to Chicago. Now we wait to see this group get together and play. Here’s to an exciting remainder of the season and a playoff push for the Bulls.