Chicago Bulls: 3 veterans worth trading the 7th pick for

Jrue Holiday Lonzo Ball Chicago Bulls (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
Jrue Holiday Lonzo Ball Chicago Bulls (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) /
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(Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images) /

77. Scouting Report. Pick Analysis. Combo Guard. 2. player. 20.0 PTS, 5.4 AST, 21.2 PER. Lou Williams

If last season taught us anything, it’s that the Chicago Bulls’ bench is very bad. Actually, that’s underselling it. They were downright atrocious. With a net rating of -5.0, Chicago’s bench was the worst in the league by a wide margin, even rating out as the third worst in the last six years.

If the Bulls are looking to bounce back next year, the bench desperately needs to stop being a major liability and instead provide some breathing room for the starting lineup. Who better to remedy the situation than perennial Sixth Man of the Year contender Lou Williams?

Nobody has carved out a niche in the league perhaps quite as well as Williams. Coming off the bench, Lou terrorizes opposing defenses with his arsenal of offensive moves. Even though Williams only played 26 minutes per game last year, it didn’t stop him from averaging 20 points a night on good efficiency. Chicago needs more shot creators, and they’d be hard pressed to find a better alternative to fill that role than Lou Will.

In this scenario, the Bulls would, in essence, be swapping Kris Dunn for Williams while banking on the Clippers being a lottery team next season. Considering the Clippers are set to regress next year while teams like the Kings, Lakers, Mavericks and Pelicans could all experience a big jump in talent, it’s a smart gamble.

In a vacuum, it may not seem wise to ship out a high pick this year in return for a lower pick next year and an aging guard. However, for the Bulls, this could prove to be a sneaky move for two reasons:

  1. This draft class is very shallow in terms of talent. The talent this draft class does have is primarily at the wing. Next year’s draft is set to be full of highly touted point guard prospects. The Bulls could very likely get a better point guard in the 12-14 pick range next year (see: Killian Hayes, Nico Mannion, and Illinois’ very own product Ayo Dosunmu) than they could at seventh overall this year.
  2. Lou Williams and Bulls’ free agent target Pat Beverley are seemingly intertwined. Where one goes, the other follows. When asked about the potential of leaving the Clippers this offseason, Beverley said that leaving his brother Lou Will “would be tough.” The Bulls could possibly get a huge value deal here, picking up two great players and mentors for the price of one.

A prospective guard rotation of Beverley, LaVine and Williams with another early pick on the way next summer could be exactly what Chicago needs to take the first step back towards competing and maximizing the potential of its young core.