Bulls should be worried about DeMar DeRozan’s recent comments

DeMar DeRozan, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
DeMar DeRozan, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /

As if last night’s crushing 91-100 loss to the Orlando Magic wasn’t already bad enough, DeMar DeRozan‘s recent comments just might be piling insult onto injury here for the Chicago Bulls. After leaving the game with a leg injury, the Bulls would falter without their star forward and drop their fourth consecutive game to fall back to 26-31 and the 11th seed in the Eastern Conference.

He wasn’t quite himself last night, shooting 8-for-20 from the field and posting a relatively meager 19 points for his standards. DeMar would ask to be pulled out of the game after logging 36 minutes, prompting concern among the fanbase regarding his injury status.

DeRozan spoke on his injury following last night’s loss, “It’s been bad, to be honest with you. It’s been bad. I’ve never been one to complain or make any type of excuses. It’s just been something I’ve just been dealing with for a while.”

DeMar DeRozan’s recent comments should prove worrisome for a Chicago Bulls team that has had terrible luck with injuries over the last decade.

If DeMar isn’t available or isn’t playing like himself, the Bulls already dwindling hopes of a postseason run will take another significant hit here. No other player on this roster can replicate DeRozan’s efficient isolation scoring or clutch factor in close games. The Bulls’ offense has simply been an abomination this season, and it’s only going to get worse if Chicago loses their primary scoring threat for an extended period.

DeRozan indicates he’s been struggling with this for a while, and if you look back at his past performances over the last 30 games it seems to check out. In the 17 games leading up to the trip to Boston where he was forced to leave the game, DeRozan was averaging 27.6 points, 6 rebounds, and 5.4 assists per game. Since playing the Celtics, however, DeMar has posted averages of 22.2 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 5.5 assists over the last 13 games.

For now, DeRozan says this is just a matter of pain tolerance and that he hopefully won’t miss extended time. That being said, other players are most certainly going to need to step up to help pick up the slack. DeMar isn’t going to (and shouldn’t) risk his long-term health and longevity for a Bulls team that looks completely inept whenever he’s not on the court.

Alternatively, Chicago could look to outside sources to bring in some additional help. A point guard has been high on this team’s list of needs for quite some time, and there is fortunately a multitude of options available on the buyout market right now.

Whether or not any free agent signing could save this season is certainly worth debating, but the Bulls may as well try something. As the only franchise to make no trades or free agent additions to the main roster since the start of the season, the Chicago Bulls cannot force DeRozan to continue shouldering the burden alone. It’s not a realistic path to success, and it’s just not fair to him.

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