1. Signing another quality free agent would make this a successful summer
Now that it’s been established the Bulls’ backcourt will presumably bristling with talent once again next year, we must turn our eyes to the rest of the roster. For a team that significantly lacked size last season, the plan this summer has… not exactly addressed this issue.
Signing Torrey Craig was without a doubt a surprising steal, I fully expect him to have a large role as the first or second man off the bench (or perhaps even earn a starting role). Still, he’s not nearly enough to plug all the holes the Bulls have down low.
After waiving Marko Simonovic, this team now only has two centers on the roster, which will leave them in a terrible spot if either Nikola Vucevic or Andre Drummond succumbs to injury. Derrick Jones Jr. was also often used as a small ball center last season, but he has also declined his player option to enter free agency and search for greener pastures. Perhaps even worse, the Bulls have yet to bring Javonte Green (or DJJ) back this summer, which means either Dalen Terry or Julian Phillips will be entrusted to play heavy minutes as a forward alongside Craig.
The Bulls desperately need to add another quality forward to the bench.
This is simply unacceptable. This team needs size, and they need it badly. With only a couple of roster spots to go around, I believe finding a flexible power forward that can also register minutes as a third-string center would be the best move to make. By killing two birds with one stone, the Bulls could find their primary backup behind Patrick Williams while also shoring up the center rotation to avoid a midseason disaster.
Arguably the greatest candidate for this role, Paul Reed, unfortunately just came off the board. Seeing as how the 76ers matched an offer greater than Chicago could offer, however, I don’t think we should lose any sleep over it. This just means the front office will have to get a little bit savvier to find this mythological perfect reserve big man — sorry Taj, you’re 38 years old now.
There are certainly several solid options still available, including Justise Winslow, Markieff Morris, and of course, Derrick Jones Jr. One name I believed would draw more interest is Christian Wood, who seems to be left out to dry following several bad breakups with teams around the league. But the name I’m most interested in now is Portland’s Tendon Watford. The 22-year-old talent has shown a lot of promise in his two seasons in the NBA, and now that he seems to be a willing three-point shooter, this is the type of forward-thinking that could pay dividends down the road.