What are the Chicago Bulls' options in free agency? A look at what's left around the league

Chicago Bulls Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Artūras Karnišovas said he'd have answers for Bulls faithful after the start of free agency.

So far, the Bulls have signed one player in center Jalen Smith while trading for Josh Giddey and drafting Matas Buzelis.

Assuming the Bulls aren't done in free agency, there are still moves to make for a team that wants to stay competitive.

So, who is left? We take a look at a few options the Bulls have as the free agent pool grows more shallow.

In this exercise, we're going to forgo the idea of the Bulls getting into the Miles Bridges sweepstakes. Bridges was been under investigation for a domestic violence case where he was arrested on June 29, 2022 and had the charges dropped in February 2024.

Option 1: Re-sign Javonte Green 

This one seems like a no-brainer.

Green averaged over 12 points and seven rebounds a game for the Bulls last year, and was one of the most athletic players for a Bulls team that consistently used him for a shot of adrenaline.

Green also shot 37 percent from 3-point range. After trading away Alex Caruso, the Bulls can't afford to lose much more shooting they didn't have much of to begin with.

Green knows Billy Donovan's system, and Donovan knows him. Keep the player that rebounded and shot the ball well.

Option 2: Dive into the remaining guard pool

This is a little difficult, since the Bulls could use some reassurance at point guard in case Lonzo Ball isn't healthy enough to return for the season opener like he's aiming for.

Here are few names still available who could deepen the guard rotation:

Tyus Jones, 28 - Averaged 12 points and 7 assists per game: Jones isn't a point guard of the highest caliber, but he's still an option that would allow Coby White to shift over completely to the shooting guard role. He's listed as a back up point guard currently behind Giddey. Even if Ball does comeback, deepening the guard rotation would be a good thought.

Kyle Lowry, 38 - Averaged 8.1 points and 4.2 assists per game: This would be a player who could back up Giddey as the starting point guard. A seasoned veteran in a back up role who could also help Giddey develop if the Bulls are committed to Giddey as the starting point guard of the future. 

Spencer Dinwiddie, 31 - Averaged 10.5 points and 4.7 assists per game: Dinwiddie averaged 12.6 points per game before he was acquired by the Lakers, who couldn't figure him into the rotation. He's a career .333 percent shooter from 3-point range, but in his 76 games in Dallas he shot over 40 percent from three, meaning there could be a place for him in a rotation in the right system.

Option 3: Make a splash

The Bulls are not going to get DeMar DeRozan back. That seems to be a foregone conclusion. Still, there are multiple ways to improve a roster. 

One is acquiring a top contributor by trade. 

At this point, the Bulls might be better served trying to acquire a player or multiple players from teams aiming to shed cap space or to commit to a rebuild.

A team that comes to mind is Utah, where rumblings of a full rebuild have been on the horizon. The two best assets the Jazz have are center Walker Kessler and stretch-four/wing Lauri Markkanen. 

Markkanen, of course, was drafted by the Bulls with the No. 7 overall pick back in 2017. It would be a fair question to ask if he would be open to a return to Chicago. If not, the Bulls would have to look elsewhere.

The Atlanta Hawks have begun selling, sending Dejounte Murray to the Pelicans. Trae Young is reportedly available, which would give the Bulls star power at point guard. But, it remains to be seen what it would cost in a trade for Young.

This leads to the bottom line of it all.

The Bulls bottom line

There are a few unknowns still to be decided. One of them is where DeRozan will go other than the Bulls. The other is Caruso is in Oklahoma City.

With the desire to trade Zach LaVine still reportedly alive – Yahoo Sports' Chris Haynes reported the Bulls offered LaVine in a trade to the Golden State Warriors – and still no concrete decision on Nikola Vucevic, it's clear the core Karnišovas put together three years ago has possibly played its last game in Chicago.

If that's the case, there's only one aspect of this to consider: it better be worth it.

The Bulls best chance at being competitive was retaining DeRozan and Caruso. They brought high-level of play on both ends of the court, DeRozan as a primary scorer and Caruso as a high-level on-ball defender, but now they're gone.

Whatever the Bulls get this offseason, it most likely come close to matching what Caruso and DeRozan gave this upcoming season.

But it needs to in the seasons to come, or else the Bulls could be mired in a uncompetitive rut.


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