The Chicago Bulls may not be joining the league’s best in Orlando, but that hasn’t stopped the team from making headlines thanks to some recent trade rumors.
With a report coming from SNY.tv that the New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets have interest in the Bulls biggest star, Zach LaVine, it at least makes it a bit easier to forget about the Jim Boylen situation for a little while.
Initially, it would seem outrageous for the Bulls to even consider trading their only all-star caliber player right now, but stranger things have happened in the league. Regardless, that rumor about LaVine has led to a more reasonable trade scenario emerging once again.
Apparently, the buzz about a potential Thaddeus Young trade hasn’t died down much in the past few months, as K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago recently reported that executives from two other teams consider Young the, “most readily available” player on the Bulls.
Young’s name has popped up in trade rumors since December, so it shouldn’t come as anywhere near as much of a shock as any LaVine news. Similarly, the reasons behind Young’s availability seemingly haven’t changed much in the intervening months either.
His availability is reportedly, “largely based on Young’s displeasure with his role and usage last season, his team-friendly deal that carries only a partial guarantee in 2021-22 and his dependability and professionalism,” according to Johnson.
That’s nothing that should surprise Bulls fans in the least. In other words, Young reportedly wasn’t happy with the team last year, something which most fans can easily sympathize with, and is the kind of consummate professional that just about any team could use.
With that in mind, it wouldn’t be hard to imagine a somewhat robust market for Young in theory, especially if one of the teams in Orlando finds itself falling short thanks to a lack of depth compared to the stacked rosters fielded by the Milwaukee Bucks and Los Angeles Clippers.
Nevertheless, an interested market alone doesn’t necessarily mean the Bulls should be eager to send Young packing.
Any team that wanted Young would obviously have good reasons to, even beyond his professionalism and affordable contract. Young’s been a solid producer for years with a smooth 3-point shot that helped him sink a touch over 35 percent of his attempts from downtown last season.
Should the Chicago Bulls really be looking to let someone like that go, especially when they represent the last line of defense between a seemingly injury-prone Lauri Markkanen and having to find consistent minutes for Cristiano Felicio again?
It’s a question that the team’s new management should ask themselves when considering any offer for Young. Unless the team is receiving a suitable replacement for Young at power forward in the deal or getting the kind of draft capital that can be used to take one this offseason, it’s hard to imagine why the Bulls would be eager to show Young the door.
Instead, the Bulls might be far better served trying to mend fences with Young about his role on the team. Keeping around a solid veteran on a roster that desperately needs a steadying force while it struggles step into league relevancy may just be one of the better moves the Bulls could make this offseason.