1 Regular Season goal for each Chicago Bulls core player

Coby White, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images)
Coby White, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images) /
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Coby White, Chicago Bulls Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports
Coby White, Chicago Bulls Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports /

4) Goal for each Chicago Bulls core player

Coby White: Play Point Guard

Our last sticking point for LaVine is first on the docket for Coby White. The second-year guard entered the league with a reputation as a scorer that he put on full display several times last season. White finished eighth among rookies in scoring and fifth in games despite getting just one start and finishing 13th in minutes.

He was the first rookie to score 30-plus points in consecutive games off the bench and joined Michael Jordan as the only Bulls to have accomplished the feat. He also set a franchise-record for threes in a quarter (and half) with seven against the New York Knicks.

But, like most rookies, White struggled with bouts of inefficiency over the course of his inaugural season in the NBA.

White had 17 games where he shot 25 percent or worse from the floor. That’s eighth-most among rookies and makes him one of only two 2019 top-10 picks to be in the top-10. The other is De’Andre Hunter, who some have already talked about as a bust. Coby is not that but it’s a dubious distinction.

He also had 24 games with nine points or less. This didn’t make him stand out in any way but, for the kind of scorer he has the potential he has, that number needs to come down.

His true challenge will be as a facilitator. Being named the starting point guard comes with expectations. Patrick Beverley average the fewest assists per game among point guards to start at least 20 games with 3.6 per game. White averaged 2.7 as a rookie.

Some of that has to do with his being on the second unit. There he was tasked with being the offensive spark off the bench and played with nary the offensive threat.

That won’t be an issue as a starter.

First, he will be flanked by LaVine more often. The duo should be a veritable pick your poison for opponents if they can co-exist. At this point, White is the better bet to make that happen then LaVine. He’ll also have Markkanen on the floor with him more. Bigs need their point guards to feed them the ball and the pair were together the sixth-most of any Bulls duo.

Carter will need White more than anyone. Markkanen still has some ability to get his own shot and can even create for others. Carter has chops at the latter but struggles with the former. He and White could have a devastating two-man game if they mesh well enough.

White was the team’s second-leading scorer in the preseason, averaging 19.5 points per game. More encouraging, though, is that he’s averaging 4.3 assists per game. He only averaged 2.7 assists per game as a rookie and it’s statistical evidence of how much better the offense has flowed this preseason.

Is it too soon to start envisioning White as the Bulls version of Jamal Murray? Maybe. But Karnisovas comes from the Denver Nuggets front office and saw more in Murray than most. White could be in a similar position if he takes better care of the ball.

We might see White’s greatest impact be on the league’s second-youngest player.