Chicago Bulls: 2016 Preview, Offseason/Draft Recap, Outlook
Chicago Bulls 2016 NBA Season Preview
October 10, 2016
NBA Championship: 85/1 Over/under win total: 50.5 See the Latest Odds
The new-look Chicago Bulls look to improve on what many would consider to be a disappointing 2015-16 campaign that saw Chicago finish 42-40, good for 9th in the East, resulting in Chi-town missing the playoffs for the first time since 2008.
Here’s your 2016 Chicago Bulls preview.
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Key Additions: The Chicago Bulls had arguably one of, if not THE busiest offseason in the NBA this past summer. The Bulls managed to sign a pair of former all-stars in point guard Rajon Rondo, who inked a two-year deal worth $28 million and also signing Chicago native Dwyane Wade, who also put pen to paper on a two-year contract worth $47.5 million. Alongside mainstay Jimmy Butler, this Bulls lineup is sure to be one to watch this coming season as the Bulls definitely have the firepower to make it back to the playoffs.
Key Losses: The Bulls also shed quite a bit of their team from last season, shipping point guard and oft-injured former 1st overall pick Derrick Rose to the Knicks along with Justin Holiday and a 2nd round pick for Robin Lopez, Jose Calderon and Jerian Grant. Chicago also lost big men Joakim Noah and Pau Gasol to free agency, with Noah joining Rose in the Big Apple signing a four-year, $72 million deal while Gasol heads to the Lone Star State, signing on with the Spurs for two years, costing San Antonio $30 million over that span.
Building through the draft: The Bulls sat in playoff purgatory, with their standing not good enough for a playoff spot and not bad enough to get a top-10 draft pick. However at #14 overall, some would tell you that the Bulls got a solid player in Michigan State product Denzel Valentine. Valentine emerged as one of the most skilled and productive players in the NCAA in his senior season in 2015-16, as he was the only player in the last 30 years to average 19 points, 7 rebounds and 7 assists per game. The closest player before him? Former 2nd overall pick Evan Turner who averaged 20,9 and 6 in 2008. While Valentine has solid size for either of the guard positions, Chicago will need to help him improve his athleticism, as he is lacking in certain areas of quickness and explosiveness.
Outlook: The Bulls may not take this division as it would take a lot to dethrone King James and the Cavaliers. However with the steps the front office has taken to make the signings they have, it does show the fanbase that this team is serious and wants to contend, which will definitely keep spirits high en route to a trip back to the posteason.
Projected record: 48-34