Chicago Bulls-Darius Garland linked heavily nearing 2019 NBA Draft

(Photo by Cassy Athena/Getty Images)
(Photo by Cassy Athena/Getty Images) /

Linked to Darius Garland late in the NBA Draft process, the Chicago Bulls are rumored to have interest in switching with the Pelicans for pick No. 4.

In two days, the Chicago Bulls are more than likely going to draft a relatively exciting player early in the 2019 NBA Draft. Rumors swirl that the team might be looking to move up in the first round, with the point guard-derived team now making a late scouting push on Darius Garland.

Heading into Tuesday’s draft, the team continues to be linked to point guards early in this draft class, addressing one of the biggest concerns outlined by John Paxson in his end of the season comments.

In the fallout of the Anthony Davis swap, the New Orleans Pelicans wound up with, in addition to a ton of other assets, the Los Angeles Lakers’ fourth pick in the 2019 NBA Draft. In early speculations of this deal, insiders expected a third team to be involved, allowing the Pelicans to move that fourth pick for additional assets. In the wake, they’re rumored shopping the fourth pick, now outside of the Lakers swap.

Prior to the Lakers trading their pick, the team had been heavy favorites to use their pick on Garland, a client of Rich Paul’s Klutch Sports. With the Pelicans now point guard heavy with Lonzo Ball and Jrue Holiday, Garland isn’t seen as much of a fit for the retooled New Orleans club. While other teams are involved in the trade, the Bulls appear to have assets appealing to the Pelicans.

Potentially, Garland could still be on the board when the Chicago Bulls pick comes onto the table. The Phoenix Suns have apparently not shown interest in Garland, never attending a workout and additionally are rumored to have made a promise to UNC guard Coby White with the #6 pick.

If New Orleans keeps their pick and the Atlanta Hawks ends up swapping to the Cleveland Cavaliers‘ fifth pick, Garland is highly likely to be on the board for the Bulls at seven. However, if the Bulls want to all-but guarantee themselves a shot at Garland, they could move for the Pelicans’ fourth pick. Depending on Garland’s performance in his final workouts leading up the draft, the Bulls might have to risk a future asset to acquire the guard in a trade.

The biggest adversity facing Garland’s value is his limited collegiate experience, appearing in just 5 games during his lone season at Vanderbilt, leaving two minutes into his final appearance. Garland averaged 16.2 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 2.6 assists in those appearances, his team winning an all games where he played three or more minutes.

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Adding the Bulls’ late surge in interest on Garland to an increasingly long list of candidates for the team’s first-round selection, draft night is certainly shaping into an interesting one for Chicago. If they’re indeed linked with the young guard, it could solve a huge need on this team’s roster heading into the 2019-2020 season.

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