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Ranking the Chicago Bulls’ 3 biggest offseason needs

Lonzo Ball DeMar DeRozan (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
Lonzo Ball DeMar DeRozan (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images) /
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Chicago Bulls
Giannis Antetokounmpo Nikola Vucevic (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

3. The Bulls must find some much-needed rim protection

I realize Giannis Antetokounmpo is virtually impossible to stop when he’s determined to get to the rim, but the first round was a painful reminder of how weak Chicago’s interior defense is. In fact, the Bulls have been in the bottom 10 in opponent points in the paint allowed for three straight seasons.

In the 2021-22 season, Chicago allowed 49.3 points per game in the paint, which was the ninth-worst mark in the NBA. They also blocked just 4.1 shots per game, which was the sixth-worst mark.

Again, a lack of bodies played a role in this deficiency as well, but even with everyone available, the Bulls need some upgrades in this department. Nikola Vucevic just isn’t a shot-blocker, and him leading the club with just 1.0 per game all season is a red flag.

The free agency pool has some offerings in the rim-protecting department, including veteran JaVale McGee out of Phoenix or Brooklyn’s Nic Claxton. However they go about it, the front office needs to look at guys who offer more resistance in the paint to reverse this ongoing trend.

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