Bulls sign Nikola Vucevic to contract extension

The Chicago Bulls have signed center Nikola Vučević to a contract extension.

Vucevic’s extension is reportedly a three-year, $60 million deal.

“During his time in Chicago, Nikola has proven that he is a special player both on and off the court,” said Artūras Karnišovas, Executive Vice President – Basketball Operations. “He has produced at an elite level since we acquired him and will remain an integral part of our foundation moving forward. Nikola’s willingness to do whatever is asked of him to help us win, while also being an established veteran leader for our group, makes him a valuable component of the culture of our organization. He is a consummate professional and tremendous teammate, which plays a big role in making us an attractive destination for other players. We are excited to have him continue to be part of our journey.”

Per the Chicago Tribune, “the Bulls’ decision to trade for Vučević has been a point of contention since he arrived in Chicago. The acquisition cost the Bulls a pair of first-round draft picks, Otto Porter Jr. and Wendell Carter Jr. And while Vučević has been an upgrade at center, the Bulls have relatively little to show for it — one winning season and one playoff win.”

“I’m excited to continue my journey as a Chicago Bull,” said Vučević. “Since I have arrived in Chicago, everyone in the organization has been incredibly welcoming to my family and me. I am motivated more than ever to achieve our mutual goals as a team. I want to thank the Reinsdorf family and Artūras for continuing to believe in me. I also want to thank Bulls fans for the constant support, you guys are the best part about playing in Chicago. We will work harder than ever to bring success to the city of Chicago.”

Vučević, 6-10, 260, averaged 17.6 points, 11.0 rebounds and 3.2 assists in 33.5 minutes while playing in all 82 games (82 starts) for Chicago in 2022-23. He finished third in the NBA in double-doubles (51) a year ago, becoming the fourth player in Bulls history with 50-plus double-doubles in a season (A. Gilmore, C. Oakley, P. Gasol). The Montenegro native and former USC product was the only NBA player to make at least 100 three-pointers (121) and grab 800-plus rebounds (903) last season and is the only Bulls player to ever do so. Vučević ranked second in the league with 903 total rebounds, while leading the NBA with 744 defensive rebounds. His 744 defensive boards marked the sixth-highest season total in Bulls history, including the highest since 1997-98 (D. Rodman).

Author: Inside Hoops

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