Yesterday’s Score: San Antonio Spurs 32/40
State of the Organization: Chicago Bulls (as of 7/23/2012):
Players Lost: John Lucas III (Raptors), C.J Watson (Nets), Kyle Korver (Hawks)
A big player not named on this list, is Derrick Rose. Rose, who suffered a severe knee injury in the first game of the playoffs this year–is not anticipating a return to the Bulls until possibly March 2013. That is as big of a loss as any team could have. So for that, they’re outlook here is not looking good. Losing the two players behind Rose, who for the majority of last season played huge minutes to fill in for the injured all-star, is almost as substantial. Watson and Lucas III played extremely well and losing them is going to create a big hole on this team.
1-10 Score: 8
Players Obtained: Marquis Teague (No. 29) Kirk Hinrich, Vladimir Radmanovic, Nate Robinson
What was the Bulls answer to losing both of their backup point guards and the injury to Derrick Rose? Marquis Teague and Kirk Hinrich. Both great pickups, if they were playing reserve minutes. Unfortunately, both of these guards will be playing hefty minutes and probably won’t win too many fans over in the windy city. Hinrich, the likely starter, hasn’t played a full season in over 5 years and even then, wasn’t that great. Teague, who would benefit greatly from playing alongside Rose will be a good fit for this team. But he may be relied upon heavily early in the season and it could wear on him. Radmanovic is a nice piece to have, nothing fancy–but standing at approximately 7 feet and the ability to knock down a 3, the Bulls couldn’t stay away.
1-10 Score: 8
Short Term Outlook: If the Bulls can get Rose back in the lineup, even if it is as late as March, with a record at least hovering around .500, they should be fine. The problem is, how ready will Rose be when he returns? No one can expect that same elite athleticism and recklessness out of the former MVP, not at least until the playoffs. So, if the Bulls can get a playoff spot–they’ll be dangerous. Is Rip Hamilton going to stay healthy? Is Boozer still an elite big man in the NBA? Will Rose ever return to his 2010-2011 form? These are all questions that will need to be answered in the positive if the Bulls ever want to win a title with this current squad.
1-10 Score: 8
Long Term Outlook: This is a difficult team to assess on their long term outlook. It all depends on Derrick Rose. He is still very, very young. But after struggling all of last season with injuries and then his tragic knee injury against the Sixers in the playoffs, you can’t really rely on Rose to ever be the same guy from 2 years ago. He could very easily return in March and eventually make a 100% recovery. This next year is not happening for the Bulls, so they should ease Rose along–but in 2 years, with the youth of Rose, Noah and Deng this team should be competitive for years to come. Rose could very easily lead the Bulls to another #1 seed in the 2013-2014 season and make a run at a title. We will give him the benefit of the doubt that he can still be one of the best point guards in the league, they’re long term outlook isn’t as guaranteed as they’d like it to be, but they should be okay.
1-10 Score: 9
State of the Organization Index: 33/40
*With the addition of Nate Robinson (who could very well be the opening night starter for the bulls) Chicago gets a little deeper but no more potent of a threat than they’re already not. The trio guard group of Robinson, Hinrich and Teague will be a talented backcourt but not one that will keep the Bulls near the top of their division.