Chicago Bulls: WCJ can see Zach LaVine becoming a ‘franchise player’

(Photo by Kent Smith/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Kent Smith/NBAE via Getty Images) /

Two of the best players for head coach Jim Boylen and the Chicago Bulls so far this season are Wendell Carter Jr. and Zach LaVine.

A playoff run seems to be the ultimate goal for the Chicago Bulls this season. But there will be hurdles that come up for the Bulls this season if they keep losing games like they did on Dec. 6 at home at the United Center at the hands of the shorthanded Golden State Warriors.

The Bulls can’t be losing to the Warriors and expect to get anywhere close to playoff relevance this season. And just when it seemed like the Bulls were getting on the right track under head coach Jim Boylen, in the midst of a two-game winning streak, they get swept by the lowly Warriors in their season series. Boylen can’t seem to keep this team headed in the right direction for any longer than one or two games at a time.

However, the Bulls do have two positives that emerged of late. Second-year center Wendell Carter Jr. and shooting guard Zach LaVine are playing well this season. LaVine will be hoping for his first-career All-Star selection this season, and Carter Jr. is making significant strides in his sophomore season in the NBA.

Carter Jr. and LaVine are the two most important players to the Bulls this season, despite the belief that it would be the latter along with third-year power forward Lauri Markkanen. Lavine and Markkanen were the two best players for the Bulls in the last three or four games. But it’s hard to argue that Carter Jr. isn’t the biggest positive for the Bulls throughout their entire 23 games played this season.

But Carter Jr. is noticing a lot of positive signs of late out of LaVine’s play. In a Tweet by Eric Woodyard of ESPN, Carter Jr. took note of the progression he saw out of LaVine so far this season.

Here’s what WCJ had to say about LaVine in this Tweet from Woodyard.

"I definitely can see him becoming that franchise player for the Chicago Bulls and in any way I can help him in growing as that player, I try to."

LaVine is averaging 22.5 points per game, 4.1 rebounds, and 4.1 assists so far this season while shooting around 44 percent from the field and better than 41 percent from three-point range. Meanwhile, Carter Jr. is already averaging a double-double per game this season (12.2 points per game and 10 rebounds).

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The funny part about Carter Jr. mentioning that he thinks LaVine could be turning into a “franchise player” for the Bulls is that he might be their best long-term face of the franchise. Maybe the best adjustment that Boylen could make this season to help the Bulls get on the right side of the win column more often is getting higher usage and more facilitating looks to Carter Jr.