Chicago Bulls: Backcourt struggles are fueling the poor start

Coby White, Chicago Bulls Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
Coby White, Chicago Bulls Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports /

After dropping three straight to start the season, a lack of playmaking from the backcourt has become one of the Chicago Bulls biggest problems.

The Chicago Bulls have had an extremely disappointing start to their season. After dropping their first two games to the Atlanta Hawks and Indiana Pacers by an average of 19.5 points, calls have already begun for the team to blow up the roster. 

Then the Bulls had another poor showing on the defensive end from their backcourt rotation that led to a loss on Dec. 27 at the hands of the Golden State Warriors.

Headed into the season, hopes were high that sophomore Coby White could evolve into a starting caliber guard and help transform the offense as he was handed the keys by coach Billy Donovan.

That has not happened.

With White as the starting point guard, the offense is in shambles. The Bulls sit with the 28th offensive rating in the league. The offense lacks a fluid, cohesive motion, with the team ranking 26th in team assists per game with just 21.5 APG.

The Bulls can’t hold onto the ball either: turning the ball over 18.5 times per game (6th most in the NBA) and holding the 29th worst assist/turnover ratio.

This all points to poor guard play, which is evidenced by White’s performance in the first few games. His assist/turnover ratio is 44th amongst starting guards in the NBA. Zach LaVine is even worse, ranking 72nd; LAST amongst starting guards to register a turnover so far this season.

It’s not like they’re scoring in bunches either. Both LaVine and White are scoring less than they did last season.

All hopes of the Bulls taking a step forward this season are tied to the backcourt leading the way and learning to share the ball. Wendell Carter Jr. isn’t going to develop as a pick and roll big if there is no steady hand to get him the ball. Lauri Markkanen can’t make standstill jumpers if the guards never pass the ball to him.

Next. 3 reserve players that could use more playing time. dark

Without a steady hand in the backcourt, this Bulls offense is going nowhere. Either White or LaVine need to change their entire play style (especially on the defensive end), or maybe it is time to make some drastic changes to the roster.