Draft night is only two weeks away and as it quickly approaches the Chicago Bulls continue to work out prospects at the Advocate Center. They recently hosted some of the bigger names in the draft, and you can read BaB’s draft profiles on each:
Here’s more* players the Bulls have recently taken a look at (last update was 5/28):
Mikal Bridges; forward, Villanova
The indifference towards Bridges from Bulls fans isn’t fair. He’s a two-time national champion. He has the 3-and-D skills that NBA teams covet, and projects to slot in right away as a contributing rotational piece in the NBA. He has one of the highest floors out of the guys who will go in the lottery.
But in a league where having stars is paramount, you don’t tank all season to pick Bridges. You take a chance on a guy with a sky-high ceiling. At least that is my two cents on the matter.
Miles Bridges, forward, Michigan State University
It isn’t easy being Miles Bridges. Among Michigan State prospects, he resides in the 7-foot shadow of Jaren Jackson Jr. He isn’t even the best Bridges, with Mikal out of Villanova garnering more attention from teams with his 3-and-D upside.
But don’t sleep on Miles Bridges; in terms of physicality and build he’s already NBA ready and he attempts 3-point field goals at an extremely high rate (5.7 per game) and makes them at a respectable 36.4 percent clip. However, he probably isn’t good enough for the Bulls to pick at No. 7 and is too good to last until the 22nd pick. So....
Keita Bates-Diop; forward; Ohio State
Bates-Diop was the star of an upstart Ohio State team that surprised people this season and he also was the Big 10 Player of the Year. As a four-year player at an established program his profile has “Gar-Pax pick” written all over it. However, there are questions over whether his offense in college can translate given his limited athleticism and he only shot at a 35.9 percent clip from 3-point land last season.
Lonnie Walker; guard; Miami
Walker is one of those guys who you’d be thrilled to have if the Bulls were picking at No. 12 instead of at No. 7. He hasn’t been able to channel his freakish athleticism and first-step burst into consistent play yet, but in terms of the profile you look for from an NBA two guard (athleticism, size, at least some shooting), he checks those boxes.
He is coming off a preseason meniscus tear, so maybe the Derrick Rose flashbacks would have scared the Bulls away anyway if they were picking at a slot more in his range.
Robert Williams; forward; Texas A&M
Playing out of position his sophomore season at Texas A&M, Williams still managed 10.4 points and 9.2 rebounds in just 25.6 minutes per game.
At 6-foot-9-inches with good length, he offers elite shot blocking (2.6 per game) and a potent lob threat at the forward rather than the center position. His per game numbers weren’t much better between his freshman and sophomore seasons so staying in school could have hurt his draft stock a bit.
Kevin Knox; forward; Kentucky
Normally being the best player on Kentucky means you are a shoo-in for a top 10 pick.
However, Knox is still growing into his body and learning the game but that’s all okay because he doesn’t turn 19 until August and he already has the physical tools and athleticism the NBA covets.
Even though he’s about as raw as they come, Knox did put up good per game totals (15.6 points, 5.4 rebounds, 50.9 percent shooting overall and 34.1 percent from 3-point land) in his one season at Kentucky.
Donte DiVincenzo; guard, Villanova
The hero of the 2018 NCAA Championship game (31 points on 10-for-15 from the field) has garnered a late first round projection. DiVincenzo and the 42-inch vertical he posted at the NBA Combine has value at No. 22.
Kaiser Gates; forward; Xavier
Gates’s workout group had him as an outlier because he’s the only one in the group not projected as a first-round prospect.
Gates was a solid role player at Xavier, but didn’t post eye-popping college numbers. He didn’t receive an invite to the NBA Combine, but what he does have going for him is a 6-foot-8-inch, 205 pound frame that is NBA ready. He’s also a really good on-ball defender which is always an asset.
De’Anthony Melton; guard, USC
If the Bulls pick this guy, Chicago Bulls executives Gar Forman and John Paxson will have a legitimate excuse for why they couldn’t scout him during the season. USC declared Melton ineligible for the entirety of the 2017-2018 season for his connection to the bribery scandal that rocked college basketball last season.
Billed as an athletic defender who knows how to score in transition, Melton needs to prove to teams that his jump shot isn’t broken (28.4 percent from 3-point land his freshman season) and that he can generate offense in half-court sets.
A.J. Davis; wing; University of Central Florida
In the same spirit of allowing a bunch of the top mid major local guys to work out for the team during a previous workout day, this is probably another favor from the kind hearts of Gar/Pax.
A.J. is the son of former longtime NBA player Antonio Davis who had a brief stop in Chicago for a season and a half. A.J. also has a twin sister who plays in the WNBA. A tenacious rebounder with good length, A.J. finished third in the American Athletic Conference with 7.6 rebounds per game last season
Matt Farrell; point guard; Notre Dame
Farrell is like Ryan Arcidiacono; he’s tough, he does everything right in terms of setting up the offense and getting his teammates involved. He doesn’t turn the ball over much and he has the intangibles.
But, in terms of NBA-ready measurements and athleticism he isn’t there.