The Bulls had an offseason that was awful in execution and will set the franchise back for years, compounded in awfulness in that the same guys who made these calls will keep getting chances to make things worse. You could be charitable in giving credit for at least the design of the offseason being not-awful, that is if you’re a ‘PATH’ sympathizer and not really thinking about said path’s, well, path.
We do have more critical thinkers out there who are hunting for offseason content (and in a symbiotic relationship we’re doing the same) in reminding everyone the Bulls had a really terrible summer.
Kevin Pelton of ESPN gives them an F, and it doesn’t stand for ‘folks, at least they found a direction’
With two years remaining on Jimmy Butler's contract, the Bulls could have held out for a better offer...Dunn will have to improve dramatically from a disappointing rookie season to become an NBA contributor, and LaVine's poor defense limits his value.
Indeed, Pelton in another piece cites his lack of belief in LaVine, with RPM projecting him ‘below replacement-level’. There is gives acknowledgement to the Justin Holiday contract but refers to Felicio as ‘above-market’. That’s an interesting thought, as the Bulls did re-sign Felicio immediately in free agency and we’ve since seen the center market dry up (and the free agent market in general, with Nikola Mirotic still un-signed).
Nate Duncan and Danny Leroux, in their Eastern Conference offseason grades episode, led off with: “oh, god...”
Duncan did give them some credit for picking a direction, giving the Bulls a mere flat ‘F’ instead of ‘F-minus’. Duncan figures the Bulls fascination with Kris Dunn is a real problem, as he doesn’t project Dunn as a long-term starting PG, and it also kept the Bulls from drafting Dennis Smith and instead taking Lauri Markkanen, who Duncan says has a defensive game not fitting with the modern NBA.
Leroux also called the Felicio contract a ‘misreading of the market’, and figures the Bulls offseason a total disaster unless ‘we’re really wrong about several of these guys, which is possible just not likely’. I agree: the only way the Bulls get retroactive credit for this PATH is if it turns out they unearthed gems in their scouting, particularly with Markkanen and Dunn. Seemingly nobody else thinks these guys will be great, so if they are the Bulls truly projected something others didn’t.
Both Duncan and Leroux went on to say that if this was truly the best offer, then just hold on to Butler (I’ll jump in to say this offer ‘works’ on draft night only in that they moved up 9 friggin’ slots, they didn’t even get an extra pick!). As it stands now, they both see the Bulls not getting back in the playoffs for another 4 or 5 years, a time where I expect to keep being furious that GarPax still have these jobs.