Gun Shy

Considering the lack of shooting on the Chicago Bulls, it makes perfect sense that Arturas Karnisovas couldn’t pull the trigger at the NBA Trade Deadline.

Yesterday’s inaction was an embarrassment.

This team has glaring needs that could have been filled yesterday with even the most modest of moves. The Bulls need more 3 point shooting. They need better interior defense. They need some hope that they can get better.

And not just hope for the fans, but hope for the players on this roster.

This is a roster that doesn’t believe in their head coach. This is a roster that is pointing fingers at each other in the locker room. This is a roster that shows up to each game and goes through the motions, all the while dreaming of a better team.

Karnisovas and Marc Eversley had an opportunity to refresh that roster yesterday, to give that roster some hope, and they failed to deliver.

The Mid Three are all playing for themselves. Nikola Vucevic is in the midst of a contract season, he has to get his stats in order to get that fat contract this summer. DeMar DeRozan is a isolation assassin, his entire career has been built on his shoot-first mentality. Zach LaVine is trying to remain in the conversation for top talents in the league while justifying his max contract. These guys are playing for themselves, they need a voice to pull them back to the team.

Billy Donovan gets paid to be that voice, but he has been ineffective. A brilliant basketball mind without the voice to catch the attention of your top talent is the same as any boneheaded lame duck coach. Every other team in the league would have fired Donovan when it became clear that the stars weren’t listening to him, but the Bulls gave him a secret contract extension.

Where is the accountability going to come from? Who is going to step up and be a leader in the locker room?


There were rumors that teams were interested in trading for Zach LaVine. In particular, a detailed trade with the New York Knicks was leaked about an hour before the deadline passed. The deal didn’t get done, but with that rumor came other rumors from well known mouthpieces for the Bulls organization, rumors that LaVine is on the outs with not only Coach Donovan but the rest of the team as well.

This is not new knowledge. Ever since LaVine was benched by Donovan early in the season, Zach has made his disappointment in Billy known. It was also revealed fairly quickly after the infamous Minnesota halftime blow up between players, that LaVine was the main focus of his teammate’s ire.

Don’t get distracted by this Bull Shit. We’ve seen this script before.

Making LaVine the scapegoat for this horse-shit season and organization is not the answer. It’s straight out of the Gar-Pax/Reinsdorf playbook.

Loul Deng, Derrick Rose, Jimmy Butler, et al, let’s not add Zach LaVine to the list of players we’ve let this mom-and-pop organization bad mouth and scapegoat on the way out of town.

Zach LaVine is not the savior of this franchise. I think he is one of the reasons that the Bulls are not good, but he is NOT the main reason. He does more to keep the Bulls competitive than he does to hurt the team. He would complement so many other super stars around the NBA, and help so many other franchises be better. It’s not on LaVine that this team is bordering on garbage.

For all the legitimate complaints you can have against LaVine, you can’t deny he shouldered this franchise during the rebuild years. You can’t deny he has worked incredibly hard to make himself an All-Star. You can’t deny that he has been all about making the Bulls better as he improves. He plays within the system, he tries to win. Sure, he has an ego, but you want that in a star player. Zach LaVine is not the only problem on this very problematic team, and he is certainly not the biggest problem. Remember that when the rhetoric machine starts spitting slander.

DON’T fall for the Bulls Shit.


As I’m typing this, ESPN’s ace NBA reporter and news breaker, Adrian Wojnarowski, is letting the world know that if/when Russell Westbrook is bought out of his contract, the Chicago Bulls are the “frontrunners” to pick him up off the scrap heap.

Westbrook is well past his MVP years. He isn’t a very good shooter, nor is he a great defender, but he does play with energy and effort every night. Like LaVine, he doesn’t have the greatest basketball IQ, but he works hard and has played for Billy Donovan before. He might even hold his teammates accountable in the locker room. The Bulls could do a lot worse than Russell Westbrook in the buy out market (Ahem* Tristan Thompson *Ahem). Some other names that have been linked to the Bulls (if/when the get bought out) Danny Green, Seth Curry, and John Wall.

Until the Reinsdorfs allow AKME to spend some more cash, thanks for reading and GO BULLS!