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NBA Draft Lottery 2021: Bulls send No. 8 pick to Magic

The Bulls didn’t jump into the top four, so they lost their pick

2020 Chicago Bulls NBA Draft Team Operations Room Photo by Joe Pinchin/NBAE via Getty Images

After jumping into the top four in last year’s draft, luck was not on the Chicago Bulls’ side. The 2021 NBA Draft Lottery results kept them at No. 8, and due to the Nikola Vucevic trade, this pick will be going to the Orlando Magic. Chicago’s first-rounder in 2023 is also top-four protected and will go to the Magic if it falls outside of that range.

Coming into the lottery, Chicago’s chances of keeping its own pick was well-documented. The Bulls had a 20.3 percent chance of getting into the top four and a 4.5 percent shot at landing the No. 1 overall selection. To make matters even tougher, Chicago had to watch as three Eastern Conference teams got awarded picks in the top four, with the Central Division rival Detroit Pistons getting No. 1.

Now the main focus moves to Chicago’s work in free agency. They will most likely be going after a point guard along with hopefully finding an upgrade at the wing position. But there still is the possibility of them trading into the first round. However, given they already owe another pick to Orlando, it would be tough for the Bulls to give up even more future assets to move up. It would be tough to trade up for a prospect whose prime won’t be matching up with Chicago’s two All-Stars in Vucevic and Zach LaVine.

The Bulls still have their second-round pick at No. 38 overall. They were able to swap places with the New Orleans Pelicans thanks to the Nikola Mirotic trade. In Arturas Karnisovas’ first draft last year, he took Marko Simonovic with the 44th pick. At No. 38, there should be some solid prospects still available, so there is always a chance the Bulls find a gem in the second round.

The 2021 NBA Draft is scheduled to take place on Thursday, July 29.