Zach LaVine, All-Star

He did it!

Zach LaVine made the NBA Eastern Conference All-Star Team!

I think Thadd Young summed up every Bulls fans hopes and dreams for Zach and this roster, in a video call congratulating LaVine…

I’m so happy right now. I really didn’t want to write another post about Zach getting screwed out of being an All-Star. I didn’t want that ugly loss hanging over this franchise for another season. And that’s what it would have been, an ugly loss. LaVine being an All-Star effects not just his personal standing around the NBA, but the Bulls as well. Instead of being a laughing stock, the Bulls are now a team on the rise. They’ve been winning, gradually moving up the ranks of the Eastern Conference. They have an All-Star now, a player to be feared, a “best on the court,” a “best in the League.” We’ve known this for a couple seasons, but finally the rest of the NBA knows it too. The Bulls aren’t pushovers anymore. On any given night they could beat any given team, thanks in large part to the contributions of the All-Star, Zach LaVine.

Zach LaVine is cemented as one of the greatest Bulls in NBA history.

If you run down the list of Bulls that made an All-Star team, it’s a who’s who of all time greats. Zach LaVine joins names like Jerry Sloan, Bob Love, Chet Walker, Norm Van Lier, Artis Gilmore, Reggie Theis, Horace Grant, Luol Deng, Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, Pau Gasol, Jimmy Butler, and of course, Scottie and Michael.

This is a huge deal. An important step not only for LaVine’s career, but for a franchise that has been scuffling through a rebuild. It feels like the Bulls have turned a corner. It’s been 5 seasons since the Bulls had a player make the All-Star team (Jimmy Butler 2016-17 season), and it’s been about as long since they were truly relevant in the NBA. Zach making the All-Star team is a big step for the franchise reaching relevancy.

Over three years ago, when I first started blogging, Butler had just been traded, and one of the big questions moving into the rebuild was “Who will be the face of the franchise?” LaVine was always the odds on favorite, but it was never a sure thing. He was still rehabbing from a torn ACL and wouldn’t play his first basketball game as a Bull until well into the second half of the 2017-18 season. He came to the Bulls with labels attached, things like “just a dunker,” “never plays D,” and “not a winner.”

“Just a dunker”

LaVine has had to shred each of these labels over the course of his 3 seasons with the Bulls. He’s turned skeptics into believers, and every time someone places a limit on him, whether it’s us fans, the media, coaches, or fellow players, he works his ass off to prove them wrong. Zach LaVine is the Face of the Chicago Bulls. He is constantly working to improve himself and the team. Whatever happens going forward, let’s celebrate a true Chicago All-Star, the first in five seasons, and one of the greatest Bulls of all time.

Congratulations Zach LaVine, NBA All-Star!