Sunday , Jun , 21 , 2009 J.N.

The Future for the Chicago Bulls

The Future for the Chicago BullsAfter that exhilarating first round epic classic battle against the Boston Celtics, it’s time to look toward next season and beyond. As with other teams, there are questions. Who is worth keeping? Who needs to be traded away? Who should we acquire? What can get better? What do we need in the draft? Before any of this can be answered, we should examine last season’s rookie of the year, Derrick Rose.

What is Rose’s ceiling and expectations for 2009-2010?

Rose’s potential is off the charts with what he displayed against Rajon Rondo. Despite Rondo averaging a triple double, Rose showed us something, too. He arrived with clutch defensive plays and displayed glimpses of what can be. Next season, assuming that he already put in the work ethic to become great, he should be an all star. I’m just not sure if he will be a starter for all star weekend because Rondo has arrived, too. It will be difficult to start over someone who could average a near triple double by mid-season. Rose already has a solid jumper when he’s on. His shot has the potential to be very good, but not great. His defense needs work, but the base tools are there. Like I have said before to other people, he is mini-Lebron or a true point guard version of Dwayne Wade. Don’t get it twisted. I know those are huge shoes to fill yet whatever he is, he can become a Hall of Famer. He’s a kid who already put 36 points and 11 assists in a playoff game.

In his first playoff game!

Armed with unrivaled athleticism, Rose can be as great as he wants to be. Barring any type of injury, I am envisioning him to average 21 points, 4.5 rebounds, 8 assists, and a steal per game for the 2009-2010 season. That’s not far fetched since his rookie statistics are pretty close. In the end, he will make major leaps back in to the playoffs.

The Phoenix Suns are still interested in Luol Deng. Also among reports, Chicago is looking to trade their picks to move up to the 11th spot in the draft. As basketball fans, we love to play general manager and I will do the same here. Trade Luol Deng. If that’s not enough, package him with Kirk Hinrich to grab Amare Stoudemire. Deng, with that huge contract, has been playing as if he was the number one option whenever he was healthy enough to play. Realistically he is more of a number three option. As for Hinrich, he has made overtures that he should be a starter. I agree. He should. Just not on this ball club. Ben Gordon is just as good as the starter and Hinrich is easily replaced in the draft. Whether Gordon leaves or not, Kirk should not be the fall back plan since his undersized just like Ben. He does not make baskets consistently and negates Derrick Rose’s play making ability whenever they team up on the floor. Plain and simple, it’s not a good mix and they do not complement each other.

John Salmons is a keeper, however, he should not be the starting two guard. Last season, Salmons actually proved that he can replace Luol Deng instead. I would stick with him as the starting forward if Chicago cannot get a slight upgrade there. Salmons is great. He’s economical to keep. The only problem with him is that he likes to play isolation too much, which does not work within the system. Oh, who am I kidding? There was no real offense system last season.

The power forward is a huge problem. Chicago does not have any capable scoring power forward. Tyrus Thomas is a good shot blocker, but I’m not sure if he’ll put it altogether. He’s a hybrid forward who still does not get it. Package him away if possible. Even head coach Vinny Del Negro lost faith in him. Yes my friends, it is {that} bad.

Joakim Noah is the long term center. That monstrous slam over Paul Pierce solidified that. He has the makings of a great defensive player. With his tenacity, energy, and hustle, it’s very difficult to replace that when he actually has “starter level” talent.

What to do Gar Forman and John Paxson?

Try to move up in the draft to snatch “Super G” Gerald Henderson, Jr. He should be a solid two guard coming off the bench as a sixth man or something. Chris Bosh and Amare Stoudemire are still available. Work out a trade revolving around Deng, Hinrich, and Tyrus Thomas. Also, get a back up veteran point guard. Some people forget that the Bulls still have Omer Asik coming over; another solid center who can block shots. Other names that have been thrown around in Bulls’ circles: Hansbrough, Budinger, Dejuan Blair, James Johnson, Terrence Williams, and Casspi.