Bulls

Former Bulls reflect positively on time in Chicago

Former Bulls reflect positively on time in Chicago

Thursday, April 7, 2011
Posted: 12:36 p.m.

By Aggrey Sam
CSNChicago.com

With the success the Bulls are having, its always interesting to debrief former players about their thoughts on the season. When Hakim Warrick came back to Chicago Tuesday night, he told CSNChicago.com that he wasnt surprised at all about the Bulls current status.

I knew coming in, especially with the addition of Carlos Boozer, they had a chance to be a special team, said Warrick, now with the Phoenix Suns.

Warrick, who was acquired by the Bulls in a deal for current Bucks swingman John Salmons at the trade deadline, said hes been singing the praises of All-Star point guard MVP candidate Derrick Rose for a while now.

When people ask me, Whos the best point guard in the game?I knew that if he could knock that shot down, hed be an MVP-type player, Warrickwho, by virtue of playing with two-time MVP and Suns point guard Steve Nash this season, is qualified to speak on the topictold CSNChicago.com. Rose is just more consistent with knocking down that jump shotthree-point, pull-up. When hes knocking that downtheres already no one that can stay in front of himbut when youve got to respect that more, it makes it easier for him.

Meanwhile, another former Bull, James Johnson reflected upon his time in Chicago, while looking forward to his future with the young Raptors, who visited the United Center last Saturday.

The Bulls organization did a great deed for meIm glad they stayed honest and true to me, said the second-year forward, who is a starter for Toronto after being dealt by the Bulls prior to the trade deadline. Its been a year and a half since Ive been playing, so every game to me is like a new experience, so Im always going to play like its my first chance.

Now I finally get the chance to get some valuable minutes on the United Center court, quipped Johnson, who was interrupted by veteran teammate Reggie Evans, who joked, At least you get to play here.

This is a chance for me to finally show what I can doIm proud of them the Bulls as the teammate that I was, but at the same time, Im really just looking forward to my future and getting Toronto on the map, and bringing them forward as an organization like the Chicago Bulls did during their rebuilding years.

Aggrey Sam is CSNChicago.com's Bulls Insider. Follow him @CSNBullsInsider on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Bulls information and his take on the team, the NBA and much more.

NBA Mock Draft 3.0: Workout season could be more important than ever

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USA TODAY

NBA Mock Draft 3.0: Workout season could be more important than ever

With Zion Williamson making his NBA regular season debut Wednesday night, we finally got a chance to see what a No. 1 overall draft pick is supposed to look like: an athletic and versatile skill set, with the chance to impact a franchise for years to come. 

2019 No. 2 overall pick Ja Morant also looks like a franchise-changing talent with his speed and playmaking ability, lifting Memphis into playoff contention.

So, which players will have that kind of impact in the 2020 draft?

Well, for now it’s almost impossible to say. James Wiseman, the 7-foot-1 Memphis center, dropped out of school after playing just three games because of an eligibility battle with the NCAA. His size and raw tools are intriguing, but at this point his offensive game is extremely limited.

Meanwhile, Lonzo Ball’s younger brother, LaMelo is sitting out the rest of the Australian professional league season while he rehabs from a foot injury, another Australian professional, R.J. Hampton, just returned from a hip injury and North Carolina’s combo guard Cole Anthony is getting ready to return from a knee injury to finish his one and done season. 

That’s left NBA talent evaluators scrambling in trying to figure out the top of the draft, with only Georgia’s Anthony Edwards healthy and available among the players projected as the possible No. 1 overall pick. 

So, as we get closer to the end of January, here’s a look at how teams could view the available talent, with the understanding that the draft order will change dramatically as NBA scouts and GMs get a look at how players perform in the most important games of the season still to come.

2020 NBA mock draft 3.0

Kemba Walker and Trae Young being named All-Star starters could help Zach LaVine

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USA Today

Kemba Walker and Trae Young being named All-Star starters could help Zach LaVine

On Thursday, the NBA revealed the East and West starters for the 2020 All-Star Game in Chicago. Take a look:


Bulls fans will be honed in on the East selections given Zach LaVine's absence, though his realistic chances of starting the game have been slim-to-none since the first month of the season. In the last round of fan voting returns, LaVine was sixth among Eastern Conference backcourt players. He finished there, as well:


LaVine will get a chance to slide into a reserve slot, but the East’s starting backcourt of Kemba Walker and Trae Young leaves a crowded field to contend with. Guards competing for the seven reserve spots include Ben Simmons, Khris Middleton, Kyle Lowry, Bradley Beal, Malcolm Brogdon and Jaylen Brown. And that's without mentioning frontcourt favorites in Bam Adebayo, Jimmy Butler, Jayson Tatum and Domantas Sabonis.

But a modicum of good news did come from this announcement for those stumping for LaVine: Kyrie Irving's omission from the starting lineup. Irving, who has only played 15 games this season, had been second in fan voting at the time of last returns. Had he snuck in with the starters, LaVine would have also had Walker or Young to compete with for a reserve spot, both of whom he matches up with unfavorably. One has to figure Irving's odds of being selected by coaches as a reserve aren't high.

LaVine's chances still aren't necessarily great, but the coaches' picks for reserves will be announced on Jan. 30. If LaVine is shorted there, as well, there remains the possibility of an injury replacement down the road, which, commissioner Adam Silver would select (this is probably his best shot).

Once the final pool of players is decided, they'll be drafted by team captains Giannis Antetokoumpo and LeBron James on Feb. 6.

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