Offseason Report Card: Bulls get an A, three Bs and a C for summer moves

Nikola Vucevic, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
Nikola Vucevic, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
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Ayo Dosunmu, Coby White, Chicago Bulls, Bulls News and Rumors
Ayo Dosunmu, Coby White, Chicago Bulls (Credit: Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports) /

Full offseason report card and overall grade

The Chicago Bulls brought back most of their key free agents, added a guard and drafted a forward. How do things look all together?

1. Signed Torrey Craig

Grade: A-

2. Re-signed Coby White

Grade: B+

3. Signed Jevon Carter

Grade: B

4. Re-signed Ayo Dosunmo

Grade: B-

5. Drafted Julian Phillips

Grade: C

6. Re-signed Nikola Vucevic

Grade: C-

Overall Grade

The Chicago Bulls have spent the past few seasons refusing to look in the mirror; or conversely, perhaps they’re simply looking in a funhouse mirror at a distorted and unrealistic view of themselves. The Bulls are not a contender and cannot be a contender with this core of players.

If their goal was to maintain a team on the fringes of the Play-In Tournament each season, they accomplished that task. Bringing back Vucevic, White and Dosunmo will help them maintain last year’s rotation, and Carter is the exact kind of high-floor, low-ceiling role player to maintain a status quo.

The problem is that the Bulls clearly think that if they can get healthy they can make a move in the Eastern Conference, perhaps fueled by their hot start in 2021-22. That version of the Bulls was a mirage anyway, but it’s also not coming back. The Bulls needed to find a path forward that wasn’t simply “win 40 games” and they couldn’t do that.

Most of these deals look fine in a vacuum, but taken together they reveal a mistaken approach to team-building. And by signing three-year deals, Chicago is planning to live in purgatory for the foreseeable future. That’s a bitter pill of mediocrity for fans to swallow.

Grade: C

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