Friday, February 23, 2024

Chicago Bulls still could add to their roster for a playoff push via the buyout market. Here are 3 potential targets.

ORLANDO, Fla. — The Chicago Bulls didn’t make a move at the NBA trade deadline, but that doesn’t mean they won’t add one last piece to their roster before the final stretch of the season.

The front office has been going this route in recent years – the Bulls have added players such as Tristan Thompson and Patrick Beverley to fill needs for a final playoff push. And this year, the Bulls have an extra roster spot after receiving an injury exception for Lonzo Ball, who hasn’t played basketball since January 2022 and won’t return this season after undergoing a third surgery on his left knee.

The buyout market is still a limited mechanism for acquiring high-level talent. While several players are available for the Bulls, most have had rough seasons or struggled to fit in with their former coaches or teammates.

The Bulls have been hit or miss with acquisitions in the past – Thompson was relatively ineffective as a backup center after adding him in February 2022, while Beverley’s short-lived tenure last season provided a boost to the team before failing in the game. in tournament.

Filling the holes left by injuries will be the Bulls’ main priority – and the most glaring deficit is behind the 3-point line. With Zach LaVine out for the season and Patrick Williams out indefinitely, the Bulls have lost much of their 3-point shooting volume.

These two players averaged 3.8 shots on 10.2 attempts, accounting for 32.5% of the team’s shots from behind the arc. The Bulls have significantly improved their 3-point shooting this season, but risk falling back to their old ways with these two sidelined.

The Bulls lost to the Orlando Magic 114-108 in overtime on Saturday. They still hold 9th place in the East.

Here are three players to consider in the buyout market.

Joe Harris

Pistons forward Joe Harris warms up during a game against the Nuggets on January 7, 2024 in Denver.

Waived by the Detroit Pistons

Harris appears to be one of the Bulls’ top targets. According to a report from NBC Sports Chicago, the front office has already expressed interest in the veteran on the buyout market.

Harris, 32, has played in just 16 games for the Pistons this season, averaging 2.4 points and 0.6 assists while shooting 33.3 percent from 3-point range. But the Bulls are likely interested in his background — the 10-year veteran is a career 43.6 percent 3-point shooter and shot 42.6 percent in 72 games for the Brooklyn Nets last season.

Evan Fournier

New York Knicks guard Evan Fournier (13) takes a shot over Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine (8) during the second half at the United Center on Thursday, October 28, 2021 in Chicago.  (Armando L. Sánchez/Chicago Tribune)
Knicks guard Evan Fournier shoots over Bulls guard Zach LaVine on October 28, 2021 at the United Center.

Waived by the Pistons after a trade from the New York Knicks

Another high-upside player who hasn’t seen many minutes, Fournier has logged just 13 minutes in three games this season when healthy after falling out of favor with Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau.

Bulls center Nikola Vučević offered a moment of levity when Fournier was initially traded to the Knicks, posting a gif on X of Mel Gibson’s character shouting “Freedooooooom” in “Braveheart” with the caption “Evan Fournier right now” .

But if Fournier, 31, can establish a better relationship with a new coach, he should still have plenty to offer as a shooter. He shined at the FIBA ​​World Cup last summer, averaging 14 points in a solid tournament for France. And he shot 37.8% on 3-pointers during his 12-year career.

Danilo Gallinari

Detroit Pistons forward Danilo Gallinari (12) shoots between Cleveland Cavaliers guard Max Strus (1) and forward Georges Niang, right, in the second half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday 31 January 2024, in Cleveland.  (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Pistons forward Danilo Gallinari shoots between Cavaliers guard Max Strus (1) and forward Georges Niang on January 31, 2024, in Cleveland.

Waived by the Pistons

Gallinari, 35, is an option that could solve two problems for the Bulls: size and shooting. The 6-foot-10 power forward is a career 38.2 percent shooter from behind the arc and had a 35.5 percent average this season for the Washington Wizards and Detroit Pistons.

There’s reason to be concerned about how Gallinari would fit into the defensive schemes that have helped the Bulls stay afloat over the past two seasons, but he could be a short-term solution to others weaknesses of this list.

Note: The content and images used in this article is rewritten and sourced from



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