Did you forget that Cristiano Felicio was still on the Chicago Bulls?
Well, he was in the news yesterday so hopefully this will help jog your memory.
Felicio broke his right wrist in practice on Monday and is out four to eight weeks.
“I’m very disappointed for him,” Boylen said via NBC Sports Chicago. “Hopefully we can get him back soon.”
Not to be overly harsh, but this injury is about as inconsequential as they come. He has yet to make the active roster this regular season, and sits behind on the depth chart rookie Daniel Gafford and four other players.
When he first came to the Bulls, Felicio showed some promise as a rim-running big man that could also rebound a little. He carved a niche for himself with the 2016-2017 squad by developing good pick-and-roll chemistry with Dwyane Wade (although he took a triple-double away from him). At 6-foot-10-inches tall and only 23 years old, the Bulls were probably correct to give him an opportunity when they signed him in 2015.
But in the summer of 2017, the Bulls then gambled on Felicio’s early flashes of productivity and inked the Brazilian big man to a four-year, $32 million contract mere minutes into free agency.
Since his big payday, Felicio has been recalled to the Windy City Bulls 10 times, while at the NBA level he’s averaged 4.8 points and 3.9 rebounds per game. Felicio has been in the bottom 15 among centers who averaged at least 15 minutes per game in player impact estimate in each of the last two seasons. Adequate for a 10th or 11th man on a minimum-level salary, and valuable if you want to tank, but not for a guy making about $8 million per year.
The contract given the production is an epic disaster, but by all accounts Felicio is a good guy. He even admitted to the Chicago Tribune last year that he felt pressure to live up to the expectations that came with how much he was getting paid.
“At some point, I let the contract get in my head a little bit,” Felicio said. “I felt I had to prove myself more than I did last year. And I think at some point that frustrated me a little bit because I wasn’t playing as well as I did last year. And then I started not getting any minutes. And that frustrated me even more. I knew I had to get out of that funk. I talked to the coaches and they helped me.”
The Bulls have one more season after this one to pay him an exorbitant amount of money to fry on the bench, after which one of the front offices biggest gaffes will finally be over.