This summer was quite a busy one for the Chicago Bulls front office, as they gathered up every last penny they could afford to doll out contract extensions to retain several core players including Nikola Vucevic, Coby White, and Ayo Dosunmu. Others weren’t as fortunate, as the Bulls said farewell to a few quality role players like Derrick Jones Jr. and Javonte Green.
Now is no time for rest and relaxation, however, as Chicago is going to have another critical contract extension decision on their hands very soon. That’s because fourth-year forward Patrick Williams is reportedly looking to fetch a top-dollar extension from the Bulls after being selected fourth overall in the 2020 NBA Draft.
At least, that’s what ESPN’s senior writer Zach Lowe is reporting. Here’s what Lowe had to say in the most recent episode of his popular podcast, The Lowe Post.
"“I’m hearing Patrick Williams wants big, big numbers for his next contract… like, starts with a 2 and isn’t $20M.”"
Patrick Williams has a lot left to prove if he truly wants a hefty payday from the Bulls next summer.
After missing most of his sophomore season due to injury and failing to immediately look the part of a future NBA star, this report is sure to have Bulls fans scratching their heads. Williams averaged a career-high 10.2 points last season, which really highlights just how mediocre he’s been in his tenure with the Bulls thus far.
In fact, if he got his wish here, Williams would be just the second player in Chicago Bulls history to ever receive a contract in excess of $200 million. Zach LaVine was the first player, inking a deal in 2022 for $215 million and spanning up to five seasons. LaVine had already earned two All-Star appearances and averaged in excess of 23 points per game for four consecutive seasons at that point, so putting Williams in the same tier feels like a lot more than a stretch.
In order to get a deal of this magnitude, Williams would need to either become a true 20+ points per game threat (even alongside his co-stars), learn to crash the boards and play like a true power forward, continue shooting at a 40% clip from beyond the arc, and develop his defense even further to an All-Defensive Team caliber. Preferably all of the above. All in just one season.
Doesn’t feel likely, does it?
I, for one, certainly don’t have the confidence that he can make these leaps in just one year given what we’ve seen from him thus far. Of course, there’s always the chance that this report isn’t as credible as ESPN would have us believe because I don’t see how anyone in Pat’s camp could possibly think that this is what he’s worth at this point in time. This story will undoubtedly unravel over the course of the season, so stay tuned for any further updates here.