3 Key players who will elevate the Chicago Bulls into the Playoffs

Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls, NBA Global Games (Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports)
Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls, NBA Global Games (Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls
Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images) /

3. Zach LaVine

The media has created a narrative surrounding Zach LaVine and his commitment to the Chicago Bulls, his relationship with DeMar DeRozan, and plenty of trade rumors. However, LaVine has indicated that he wants to still be with the Bulls and he is looking to finally lead them over the hump and past the first round.

LaVine has the talent to complement DeMar’s scoring and be an offensive driver that can scare a lot of teams in the East. LaVine’s success on the offensive side of the ball is the key to the Bulls winning games, as the team wins when Zach gets hot. In the 8 games that LaVine has scored 28 or more points, the Bulls have gone 7-1 and have beaten Eastern conference playoff teams like the Nets, 76ers, Knicks, and Pacers.

Even the Bulls’ recent stretch of strong play after the Timberwolves locker room incident has been led by LaVine’s play. The team has gone 8-5 with Zach averaging a team-high 27.8 points per game on 51.8/46.2/84.1 shooting splits. He is also adding in 4.5 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game while averaging 2.2 turnovers per game, which is less than his average on the year. LaVine has particularly excelled in the catch & shoot game from long range, hitting the 16th most 3’s over this stretch, while only ranking 61st in 3-point attempts:

  • 2022-23 Season: 1.7 3PM (87th Percentile), 46.4 3PT% (96th Percentile)
  • Last 13 Games: 2.0 3PM (95th Percentile), 56.5 3PT% (94th Percentile)

LaVine has started to put up electrifying performances, including this 41-point game against the 76ers on January 6:

If Zach can keep on this torrid offensive pace this season and truly return to his form in the 2020-21 season, the Chicago Bulls can finally meet the expectations that our fanbase has had for this team. LaVine is showing that he deserves to be a max player, and is looking to translate that into team success.

Next. LaVine's resurgence signals genuine playoff push. dark