Bulls Rumors: James Ennis III would be valued, but unnecessary

The roster moves might not be quite done yet as more Bulls rumors circulate ahead of the start of Training Camp and the preseason. According to a report from Michael Scotto of Hoops Hype on Sep. 8, the Bulls are one of four teams interested in pursuing the former Orlando Magic small forward James Ennis III in free agency.

The other three reported teams that are interested in pursuing Ennis in free agency this offseason are the Portland Trail Blazers, Los Angeles Lakers, and Orlando Magic (his former team).

As one of the top remaining players available in free agency at this point of the offseason, Ennis would be a good find for the Bulls. Although, it isn’t the most needed signing just a few weeks ahead of the start of Training Camp.

The Bulls now have a bevy of wings in the rotation after the signing of the former Toronto Raptors and Detroit Pistons small forward Stanley Johnson. Ennis is a much better shooter and overall scorer than Johnson, but he isn’t as good of a defender.

On the wing, the Bulls also now have small forwards Derrick Jones Jr. and Troy Brown Jr. in the mix. That’s not to mention the fact that shooting guard Javonte Green is likely to assume some minutes on the wing.

Bulls rumors now linking Chicago to SF James Ennis III

If the Bulls do sign Ennis, it would assume that the Bulls are looking to play one of him, Brown, Jones, etc. in key minutes at the four. That could also signal that the Bulls aren’t quite sold yet on Johnson.

Assuming the plan at this point is for the front office just to give head coach Billy Donovan as many bodies as possible to evaluate in camp and move forward from there, then it makes sense to sign Ennis. If the Bulls did sign Ennis, he would clearly be a favorite to make the 15-man roster.

That would give Donovan and the Bulls a true knockdown shooter from the outside. Last season with the Magic, Ennis shot better than 43 percent from beyond the arc.

But if the Bulls signed Ennis, he would likely be the worst defender among the wings. Brown, Jones, and Johnson are all good defenders. And that trio of players will likely assume reserve roles next season.

All in all, the writing is on the wall that the Bulls are looking to play a lot of small ball lineups next season. There is not a true power forward on the roster really beyond the recently signed former Brooklyn Net Alize Johnson. With either Patrick Williams or DeMar DeRozan likely to assume the starting role at the four, the Bulls are thin among true power forwards.

Training Camp is set to begin for the Bulls on Sep. 28. And then, the preseason slate is set to open up at home at the United Center on Oct. 5 against Lauri Markkanen and the Cleveland Cavaliers.