Chicago Bulls: Why this team can push for the playoffs next season?

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Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls

Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

After trading for All-Star center Nikola Vucevic, a lot of Chicago Bulls fans believed the team was ready to jump into at least the play-in game. And rightly so, with a new All-Star big, it seemed due to happen. But going 12-17 for the rest of the season and finishing two games off the play-in was less than expected.

However, to be panic for the future of this team would be an overreaction for many reasons. The Bulls have a lot to be optimistic about moving forward thanks to some of the work done by executive vice president of basketball operations Arturas Karnisovas and general manager Marc Eversley.

The Zach Lavine “injury” and what it meant for the Chicago Bulls

After the Bulls felt like they were getting more and more comfortable with each other post-Vucevic trade, All-Star Zach LaVine was forced to miss a couple of weeks due to health and safety protocols. Without him on the floor, the Bulls went 4-7, and it looked like the early signs that the season was ending early.

That came during a stretch that the Bulls had some big expectations weighing on them to make it to the postseason. But first-year head coach Billy Donovan and the Bulls couldn’t get over the hump when it was all said and done. They wound up finishing up the regular season with a record of 31-41 and missed out on the postseason for the fourth year in a row.

Here’s a look into more on what the LaVine injury meant for the Bulls, and how this could shape how the team is built moving forward.

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