Whenever anything negative surrounding the Chicago Bulls pops up on my social media timeline, 9 times out of 10 the team is catching flak from national media outlets like ESPN who have a direct profit-based incentive to send out shots that rile up the fanbase. When outspoken criticism comes from a player currently in the NBA, however, it actually warrants our attention. That much is especially true when it’s coming from the mouth of a player who was on the Bulls’ roster just a few months ago.
Patrick Beverley captured headlines when he put the Bulls on blast in a recent episode of the Pat Bev Podcast. After being picked up off the buyout market, earning the starting point guard position, and leading the Bulls to the best stretch of their season to conclude the 2022-23 campaign, Beverley rebuilt his stock around the league and earned a roster spot with a true contender in the Philadelphia 76ers.
Many were surprised the Bulls weren’t interested in bringing the guard back for another go, as Beverley himself stated his desire to return to the team, but it never came to fruition in the end.
Of course, Chicago decided to go another route by giving deals to three other guards. The front office prioritized other backcourt re-signings by bringing Coby White and Ayo Dosunmu back on multi-year deals and even spending $20 million to bring in Bucks free agent Jevon Carter. Although they each came at reasonable prices, it remains to be seen if that was the right call in the end.
Here’s what Pat had to say regarding the Bulls’ current struggles:
"“They bulls*****ng over there, for real. I don’t like that because I came from that organization and I left like 15-9 or 14-9 and we won a ton– you know what I’m saying? And we won a ton of games. Obviously, it’s three games into the season so we ain’t just going to like, you know. But s**t like that put pressure on the coach, and that ain’t fair to him.”"
Patrick Beverley believes Billy Donovan is not at fault for the Bulls’ inability to stack up wins.
Beverley was originally brought on board to be an enforcer for a Bulls roster that clearly lacked a mental edge, so it’s not surprising to see him speak his mind here. He elaborates on his thoughts regarding the player’s only meeting by claiming that it’s not fair to scapegoat Billy for this team’s failures and that the issue at hand might be more deep-rooted than anyone wants to admit.
"I don’t like it, it’s unfortunate as a f**k, and people ain’t going to talk about it. I played under Billy D, Billy D is a great human being, Billy D is a great man, Billy D is a great coach, a great coach, a great coach bro. Like I really enjoyed playing for Billy D. His defensive s**t, contest everything, but just like his mannerism [and] how he controls the team is great.”"
I do believe that the player’s only meeting was a good thing in a vacuum, there are very real grievances that must be aired out amongst the roster. However, I agree with Beverley here in that if the intentions of said meeting were to throw Donovan under the bus rather than directly address their own issues, this is just a ticking time bomb waiting to explode. Donovan reportedly asked the team if they wanted him to leave the locker room, and the players opted to resolve the conflict without their head coach present.
You can watch Beverley speak on the Bulls’ in his episode of the Pat Bev Podcast below:
Since this video was posted, the Bulls have only continued on to post a putrid 1-5 record, so there may be some merit to Beverley’s comments here after all. If they want to change the narrative surrounding this team, the Bulls will have to get things back on track soon with favorable matchups against the Pistons and Magic in three of their next four contests.