Image ImageImage Image

The Bulls path to becoming a top tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements

Moderators: HomoSapien, RedBulls23, Michael Jackson, GimmeDat, Payt10, dougthonus, kulaz3000, Tommy Udo 6 , coldfish, Ice Man, DASMACKDOWN, fleet, AshyLarrysDiaper

Most feasible, yet unlikely player development this season

Zach becomes an top-tier defensive player (on top of keeping his offensive level flat from last year)
3
6%
Pat becomes a 14 ppg 8 rb 1 bk guy
31
57%
Lonzo becomes a 16 ppg 8 ast guy
17
31%
Coby gets his FG% up to 48% buy learning to shoot floaters
3
6%
 
Total votes: 54

User avatar
coldfish
Forum Mod - Bulls
Forum Mod - Bulls
Posts: 53,779
And1: 25,366
Joined: Jun 11, 2004
Location: Right in the middle
   

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#21 » by coldfish » Thu Sep 9, 2021 10:05 am

Let's be honest, on paper the Bulls are one of the better teams in the league. The reason why pundits aren't looking at the Bulls that way is that all of these good box score players have a history of playing on bad teams and people expect that to continue.

Its funny how the media frequently back creates a narrative to fit results. If player X can't win there has to be a reason and then that becomes that player's narrative. With the Bulls, there are a lot of negative narratives.

IMO, if the Bulls just play rational basketball (share on offense, help on defense) and stay healthy, they are a 4 or 5 seed. If you get player improvements on top of that, you are looking at a top 3 seed. A lot of people expect the Bulls to be unable to play rational basketball due to their histories.
Stratmaster
RealGM
Posts: 16,924
And1: 6,420
Joined: Oct 02, 2010
       

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#22 » by Stratmaster » Thu Sep 9, 2021 1:45 pm

MGB8 wrote:To be a top 4 team in the East?

1) LaVine improves in terms of drawing fouls and playmaking / avoiding turnovers - along with incremental growth on D

2) DeRozan shows a 3 ball equal to his best 3 point season in TO (just before the trade) and also shows that as a 2nd/3rd option, the extra energy he can expend on defense make him passable rather than poor

3) Lonzo continues incremental improvement on everything

4) Pat looks like a much improved version of the guy we saw early on (who struggled more down the stretch), especially on D

5) Vuc is healthy and doesn’t decline much at all

6) Coby’s improved defense from the last quarter of the season sticks and he is healthy amd improved as a bench offensive spark plug

7) The Carushow is more than just hype

8) One or two of Troy Brown, Javonte, Alize, Bradley, Simonovic, Ayo and maybe StanJohn prove they are ready for major nba burn
Good thoughts!

#1 should be a given.

With all of the positive press Zach got from the Olympics and him now being talked about as one of the stars of the game the foul calls should come. If they don't, Billy better be sending film to the league after every game.

The whole turnover thing with Zach was a much hype as reality. He was the primary ball handler and primary scorer, and the turnovers were right in line wth other players in that same role. With DDR, and to some extent Lonzo, I expect to see those turnovers come down.

He already showed growth defensively playing in the Olympics.

#2-DDR- I am not too worried about the 3 ball. I don't think the Bulls will have trouble scoring. The defensive effort is definitely something to watch.

#3-Lonzo- seems like it should happen naturally. He is young and from all accounts works his ass off.

#4-Pat. This one worries me.

#5- Vuc. Can't predict injuries but I don't see any reason his game would decline. Is he a fit (can he keep up if the Bulls play full speed every possesion?) is a different question, and I think something to watch.

#6 and 7 in my mind are pretty minor. And no reason Caruso wouldn't play like he always had.

#8- I am really only worried about the bigs.

Sent from my SM-G965U using RealGM mobile app
User avatar
FriedRise
General Manager
Posts: 9,088
And1: 8,171
Joined: Jan 13, 2015
Location: Chicago
 

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#23 » by FriedRise » Thu Sep 9, 2021 2:13 pm

Of the options given:

1) Much has been made for Zach to be a better defensive player, and it seems that he's now hearing that from everywhere - not just his coaches but other players also. He responded by showing that he can be that kind of player in the Olympics after KD challenged him. Now I don't know if that'll translate to him being a "top-tier defensive player", but if he can just be an average defender, that'll do wonders for this team. Areas of improvements on D: not fall asleep when playing off-ball/help D, more effort in fighting through screens more consistently, better understanding of plays being run and rotate timely/correctly.

2) It shouldn't be too hard to get from 12/6/1 (P36) to 14/8/1, but it will involve Pat getting more aggressive and decisive on both ends of the floor. We don't need him to take giant steps, but we do need him to take a step forward and especially to not regress. If we get Summer League Pat, that player should easily get to 14/8/1.

3) Lonzo was already averaging close to that in New Orleans (P36: 16.5 points / 6.5 assists). But he's doing that while being the 3rd option after Zion and Ingram. In Chicago, he's likely gonna be the 4th/5th option, so I expect his PPG to drop but APG to rise closer to 7/8 per game. We don't necessarily need him to initiate every possession (DDR, Zach, Caruso, Coby, even Pat can do that), but we do need his vision and quick decision making which can translate to higher APG.

4) Getting Coby to be more efficient will be the hardest IMO because he hasn't been that type of player so far in the NBA, but I do see a path for him to get there. The encouraging thing is he did improve across the board last year when given more responsibilities compared to his rookie year where he was used primarily as a spot-up shooter (.506 TS% -> .540). Now with him supposedly going back to his rookie role, will the improvements carry over? If he can make a jump in efficiency playing next to better ball-handlers in DDR, Ball, and Caruso, that will raise our ceiling.
ChettheJet
Assistant Coach
Posts: 3,762
And1: 979
Joined: Jul 02, 2014
       

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#24 » by ChettheJet » Thu Sep 9, 2021 2:39 pm

Limited to those four choices.

I think Zach scores at the same pace as in the past, cuts down on turnovers because he isn't forced to be a playmaker for everyone else and even if he improves on defense people will pick on him whenever his man scores a basket.

PW seems like the most likely to come true. If he's only mildly more aggressive he can score 5 more points a game. He can rebound a big more

I think Ball makes the scoring sacrifice at about 12 ppg but really makes a jump to 11-12 assists. He's got Vuc and PW to find behind the arc, DeRozan and PW cutting to the basket, Vuc and DeRozan on the post inside and Zach everywhere. He mostly scores in transition with Zach and PW on the wings

Hopefully Coby settles in to be the bench leader, He'll have Brown and Caruso as scorers with some combination of the Johnsons and Bradley and Simonovic doing the heavy lifting.

The one wildcard is DeRozan. I think some games he'll be more of a primary scorer and other times he'll see somebody else getting hot and be more of a facilitator to take play making pressure off Ball. this depending on who matches up with him defensively.
sco
RealGM
Posts: 18,244
And1: 5,355
Joined: Sep 22, 2003
Location: Virtually Everywhere!

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#25 » by sco » Thu Sep 9, 2021 2:53 pm

My point in the OP is that one of those guys would need to make an unexpected jump in their game. Who is more likely to make an unexpected leap?
:clap:
jsleesl28
Freshman
Posts: 65
And1: 49
Joined: Mar 15, 2019
     

Re: The Bulls path to better than 8th seed via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#26 » by jsleesl28 » Thu Sep 9, 2021 3:01 pm

SalmonsSuperfan wrote:we were almost the 8th seed last season for what it's worth


off topic but your salmons jab step gif is awesome. lol
meekrab
Head Coach
Posts: 6,743
And1: 4,244
Joined: Dec 15, 2014

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#27 » by meekrab » Thu Sep 9, 2021 3:15 pm

Zach playing elite defense is possible but not likely if he's still got to be doing enough work on offense to score 25+.

Lonzo could in theory get 8 apg but I'm guessing DeMar is going to be the "point guard" since everyone else in the starting lineup is a 40% shooter from outside; however the idea of people closing out hard on Lonzo just to find he's already passed the ball to someone else for an open shot makes me smile.

Big growth from Patrick is more likely to happen next season or the one after that, but more confidence in his shot, getting it up a bit faster, and continuing to cut hard when his defender takes a nap should get him above 10 ppg.

I don't have any real growth goal for Coby this year due to the injury, if he comes back healthy and plays like he did the last couple months of last season, that would be exceeding expectations. The game should be easier for him with the increase in talent everywhere else.
User avatar
SalmonsSuperfan
Pro Prospect
Posts: 834
And1: 861
Joined: Feb 14, 2019
 

Re: The Bulls path to better than 8th seed via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#28 » by SalmonsSuperfan » Thu Sep 9, 2021 6:16 pm

jsleesl28 wrote:
SalmonsSuperfan wrote:we were almost the 8th seed last season for what it's worth


off topic but your salmons jab step gif is awesome. lol

i love it, someone on this forum made it years and years ago.
User avatar
coldfish
Forum Mod - Bulls
Forum Mod - Bulls
Posts: 53,779
And1: 25,366
Joined: Jun 11, 2004
Location: Right in the middle
   

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#29 » by coldfish » Thu Sep 9, 2021 6:20 pm

Could go anywhere, I'll put it here. If a team put together 3 players who did this last year:

SG 27.4p 5.0r 4.9a 63.4%ts
SF 21.6p 4.2r 6.9a 59.1%ts
C 23.4p 11.7r 3.8a 56.0%ts

They would be talked about as a contender, not a potential #8 seed. The hate the Bulls are getting everywhere is to the point where its irrational. I get trying to be realistic but people frequently talk about the worst possible case (missing the playoffs) as being the most likely.
gardenofsound
Starter
Posts: 2,090
And1: 1,270
Joined: Aug 25, 2010
   

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#30 » by gardenofsound » Thu Sep 9, 2021 6:33 pm

coldfish wrote:Could go anywhere, I'll put it here. If a team put together 3 players who did this last year:

SG 27.4p 5.0r 4.9a 63.4%ts
SF 21.6p 4.2r 6.9a 59.1%ts
C 23.4p 11.7r 3.8a 56.0%ts

They would be talked about as a contender, not a potential #8 seed. The hate the Bulls are getting everywhere is to the point where its irrational. I get trying to be realistic but people frequently talk about the worst possible case (missing the playoffs) as being the most likely.


I have no problem with the bulletin board of the Bulls locker room being filled with Hater Octane Gasoline.

No problem, whatsoever.
User avatar
FriedRise
General Manager
Posts: 9,088
And1: 8,171
Joined: Jan 13, 2015
Location: Chicago
 

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#31 » by FriedRise » Thu Sep 9, 2021 6:55 pm

coldfish wrote:Could go anywhere, I'll put it here. If a team put together 3 players who did this last year:

SG 27.4p 5.0r 4.9a 63.4%ts
SF 21.6p 4.2r 6.9a 59.1%ts
C 23.4p 11.7r 3.8a 56.0%ts

They would be talked about as a contender, not a potential #8 seed. The hate the Bulls are getting everywhere is to the point where its irrational. I get trying to be realistic but people frequently talk about the worst possible case (missing the playoffs) as being the most likely.


Stacey King is us this whole summer lol

Jimako10
Veteran
Posts: 2,918
And1: 1,200
Joined: Jun 16, 2010
   

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#32 » by Jimako10 » Thu Sep 9, 2021 7:02 pm

They may not become a top tier team in its current iteration, but improvement/development from Lonzo, Pat and Zach will set up this team as a top tier FA destination when Vuc and Derozan come off the books in a couple years. I think that's the real plan for contending in the future.
WindyCityBorn
RealGM
Posts: 16,538
And1: 8,526
Joined: Jun 26, 2014
     

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#33 » by WindyCityBorn » Thu Sep 9, 2021 7:52 pm

nomorezorro wrote:pat becoming Thick Mikal Bridges would be real nice


For this season maybe. Long term that would be a huge disappointment. Bridges is just a complimentary player. A really good one, but still just a role player.
User avatar
Jo Jo English
RealGM
Posts: 15,667
And1: 4,031
Joined: Mar 29, 2007
Location: Vacation
     

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#34 » by Jo Jo English » Thu Sep 9, 2021 8:08 pm

If Pat takes one or two more steps towards becoming the player we all hope he will, they stay more or less healthy, and the team gels quickly and guys determine their roles, this team is going to surprise a lot of people who haven't paid any attention to this franchise in a very long time.

Nothing is a given, but those are all reasonable hopes/expectations.
User avatar
PlayerUp
Veteran
Posts: 2,870
And1: 1,316
Joined: Feb 21, 2014
Contact:

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#35 » by PlayerUp » Thu Sep 9, 2021 11:06 pm

These 2 scenarios are possible but in order:

1. Patrick Williams taking it up a level
2. Lonzo Ball breaking out a bit

Then the lesser likely ones are:

3. Zach Lavine being a top tier defender
4. Coby White being extremely efficient

Lou Williams/Jamal Crawford are Coby White common comparisons and Williams/Crawford were never able to elevate their scoring efficiency but rather improve in other areas. Nothing indicates White can ever be consistent/efficient yet. Lavine has at least improved defensively but getting to that top tier level from basically being at the very bottom would be truly remarkable but really unrealistic.

Our best bet for the Bulls to take it up another level will be:

Lonzo improves
Patrick improves
Coby has minor gradual improvements all around in his game
Lavine mildly improves more defensively but still not a top tier player defensively
DeRozan/Vucevic don't regress and very slightly improve defensively.

This is our best case scenario in my opinion.
User avatar
RoyceDa59
RealGM
Posts: 21,628
And1: 5,722
Joined: Aug 25, 2002
         

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#36 » by RoyceDa59 » Thu Sep 9, 2021 11:17 pm

Bulls are better than play in seed in my eyes.

You’ve got 2 clear cut top teams in the East: Bucks & Nets.

I’ll say Atlanta is better than Chicago as well, so that’s 3 teams in the East.

I’m not ready to put Miami, Philly or Boston ahead of Chicago definitively.
Go Raps!!
User avatar
Michael Jackson
Forum Mod - Bulls
Forum Mod - Bulls
Posts: 17,745
And1: 3,603
Joined: Jun 15, 2001

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#37 » by Michael Jackson » Fri Sep 10, 2021 2:23 am

RoyceDa59 wrote:Bulls are better than play in seed in my eyes.

You’ve got 2 clear cut top teams in the East: Bucks & Nets.

I’ll say Atlanta is better than Chicago as well, so that’s 3 teams in the East.

I’m not ready to put Miami, Philly or Boston ahead of Chicago definitively.



realistically they look like 4-8 team to me, but the east is packed tight after 1 and 2. I mean all those teams are potentially interchangeable. Really difficult to guess the standings before the year starts. While I would be shocked, a team like Charlotte could very well have a great year and end up a 3 seed. I like the Bulls chances to do that better but either are possible. I too think Atlanta is on the more legit side, if not simply because of the fact that they fought enough to get to the ECF when myself and others didn't think they could even matchup with the Knicks. Hunter and Reddish back help that team out defensively etc. They also very well could have been a fluke, who just got hot when everyone else was inured, but the way that they played after Pierce was fired makes it seem like it was more they are a good team and less fluke (although injuries absolutely help them get to the ECF)
kodo
RealGM
Posts: 15,255
And1: 10,058
Joined: Oct 10, 2006
Location: Northshore Burbs

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#38 » by kodo » Fri Sep 10, 2021 10:48 pm

Marc Stein ranking
https://marcstein.substack.com/p/nba-power-rankings
1. Milwaukee
2. Brooklyn
3. Miami
4. Atlanta
5. Philly
6. New York
7. Boston
8. Chicago
---
9. Indiana
10. Charlotte
11. Toronto
jump
Analyst
Posts: 3,692
And1: 1,180
Joined: Jun 15, 2001

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#39 » by jump » Fri Sep 10, 2021 11:39 pm

Stein's a boob.

1. Milwaukee
2. Nets
3. Atlanta
4. Bulls
5. Philly
6. Miami
7. New York
8. Boston
User avatar
coldfish
Forum Mod - Bulls
Forum Mod - Bulls
Posts: 53,779
And1: 25,366
Joined: Jun 11, 2004
Location: Right in the middle
   

Re: The Bulls path to becoming a tip tier team in the East via (unlikely) player improvements 

Post#40 » by coldfish » Sat Sep 11, 2021 12:15 am

Boston has a terrible roster and just finished a season at 0.500. Most pundits put them above Chicago.

Return to Chicago Bulls