Archive for the ‘ Chicago Bulls Blog ’ Category

Bulls add David Nwaba

The Chicago Bulls announced Friday that the team has claimed guard David Nwaba (NWAH-buh) off waivers.

Nwaba (6-4, 209) was waived by the Los Angeles Lakers on July 12. He appeared in 20 games (two starts) for the Lakers last season and averaged 6.0 points and 3.1 rebounds in 19.9 minutes. Nwaba signed a 10-day contract with the Lakers on Feb. 28 after averaging 14.1 points, 6.9 rebounds, 1.4 steals and 1.0 blocks in 39 games with the Los Angeles D-Fenders of the NBA Development League. Nwaba signed a second 10-day contract on March 11 and signed with the Lakers for the remainder of the season on March 21. He was named to the D-League All-Defensive Team and the D-League All-Rookie Team.

The Los Angeles native played three seasons at Cal Poly, where he posted career averages of 11.9 points, 5.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.1 steals and 26.0 minutes.

Bulls sign Justin Holiday

Bulls sign Justin Holiday

The Chicago Bulls have signed guard Justin Holiday.

According to multiple reports, Holiday’s contract is for two years, $9 million.

Holiday (6-6, 185) spent the 2016-17 season with the New York Knicks and averaged 7.7 points, 2.7 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 20.0 minutes in 82 games (four starts). The 28-year-old posted shooting marks of .433 from the field, .355 from three and .825 from the foul line. Holiday was one of only 17 players in the league last season to appear in all 82 games (Basketball-Reference).

This marks Holiday’s second stint in Chicago. He was acquired by the Bulls from the Atlanta Hawks for Kirk Hinrich on Feb. 18, 2016, as part of a three-team trade with the Utah Jazz. Holiday appeared in 27 games (four starts) for Chicago and averaged 6.5 points, 2.3 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 18.9 minutes played. Holiday scored a career-best 29 points in a Bulls’ win over Philadelphia on April 13, 2016. On June 22, 2016, Holiday was traded to New York along with Derrick Rose and a 2017 second-round pick in exchange for Jose Calderon, Jerian Grant and Robin Lopez.

The Chatsworth, Calif., native spent four years at the University of Washington. In his four seasons in the NBA, Holiday is averaging 5.7 points, 2.0 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 15.8 minutes played. He is shooting .408 overall, .342 from distance and .800 on free throws for his career.

Bulls re-sign Cristiano Felίcio

Bulls re-sign Cristiano Felίcio

The Chicago Bulls have re-signed forward/center Cristiano Felίcio.

Felίcio first joined the Bulls as a member of their 2015 Summer League squad. In his two seasons in Chicago, the product from Brazil has averaged 4.3 points and 4.3 rebounds in 14.0 minutes per game while shooting .573 from the field. Last season, he posted 4.8 points and 4.7 rebounds in 15.8 minutes per game with a field goal percentage of .579. He saw time in all six of the Bulls’ postseason games against the Celtics, and averaged 3.2 points and 4.3 rebounds in 13.7 minutes with .600 shooting.

In 2016-17, Felίcio notched the first double-doubles of his career (three), all off the bench. He led Chicago in both total rebounding percentage (16.5) and offensive rebounding percentage (13.1), and posted a true shooting percentage of .603, which was highest on the team among players who averaged at least 15.0 minutes per game

Bulls sign rookie Lauri Markkanen

The Chicago Bulls have signed forward Lauri Markkanen to his rookie contract.

Markkanen (7-0, 230) was selected seventh overall by the Minnesota Timberwolves in the 2017 NBA Draft, and was acquired by Chicago along with Kris Dunn and Zach LaVine in exchange for Jimmy Butler and this year’s No. 16 pick (Justin Patton).

Markkanen played one season at Arizona and averaged 15.2 points and 7.2 rebounds. He posted shooting marks of .492 from the field, .423 from three and .835 from the foul line. The Finland native was named Third-Team All-American by the Associated Press, Sporting News and the National Association of Basketball Coaches, and All-Pac-12 last season. His 576 points were the most by a freshman in school history. Over the last 25 years, Markkanen and Kevin Durant are the only players to record 69 3-pointers and 266 rebounds in their freshman year. Markkanen was a finalist for the John R. Wooden Award and the Karl Malone Award.

Justin Holiday to sign with Bulls

Here’s the NY Post reporting on Justin Holiday, a soon-to-be former Knick who will once again be a member of the Chicago Bulls:

Justin Holiday to sign with Bulls

The Knicks’ second-round draft pick, 6-foot-6 guard Damyean Dotson, has flashed his 3-point prowess and a body ready for the NBA here at summer league.

Which is a good thing since Justin Holiday, their backup point guard last season, is gone, according to a source.

Holiday agreed to a two-year, $9 million deal Sunday with the Bulls, who originally dispatched him to the Knicks in last summer’s Derrick Rose trade. A source said the Knicks never made a formal offer to retain Holiday.

Bulls waive Rajon Rondo and Isaiah Canaan

The Chicago Bulls announced today that the team has waived guards Rajon Rondo and Isaiah Canaan.

During his time with Chicago, Rondo appeared in 69 games (42 starts) and averaged 7.8 ppg, 5.1 rpg, 6.7 apg in 26.7 mpg. He shot .408 from the field, .376 from three and .600 from the free throw line. Rondo originally signed with the Bulls as a free agent on July 7, 2016.

In his lone season with the Bulls, Canaan (6-0, 201) appeared in 39 games and averaged 4.6 ppg, 1.3 rpg, 0.9 apg, 0.56 spg in 15.2 mpg. He shot .364 from the field, .266 from long range and .909 from the charity stripe. Canaan made his first career postseason appearance on April 23 vs. Boston and logged his first career playoff start on April 26. Canaan originally signed with Chicago as a free agent on July 20, 2016.

Bulls trade Jimmy Butler to Timberwolves

Bulls trade Jimmy Butler to Timberwolves

The Minnesota Timberwolves tonight acquired forward Jimmy Butler and the draft rights to center Justin Patton, the No. 16 selection in this year’s draft from the Chicago Bulls, in exchange for guards Zach LaVine and Kris Dunn and the draft rights to forward Lauri Markkanen, the No. 7 selection in this year’s draft.

Butler, a 6-7 forward, has played six seasons in the NBA, all with the Bulls. The three-time NBA All-Star (2015, 2016 and 2017) averaged career highs with 23.9 points, 6.2 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 1.9 steals per game this past season en route to earning 2016-17 All-NBA Third Team honors. Butler scored 30+ points 14 times in 2016-17, including a season-high 52 points vs. Charlotte on Jan. 2.

Butler, 27, owns career averages of 15.6 points, 4.8 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 1.5 steals in 399 games. The Houston, Texas, native has been named to the NBA All-Defensive Second Team three times (2014–2016) and was named the NBA’s Most Improved Player after the 2014-15 season after increasing his scoring average from 13.1 ppg to 20.0 ppg and his rebounds from 4.9 rpg to 5.8 rpg while averaging the same minutes in each season. Chicago originally drafted Butler with the 30th overall selection in the 2011 NBA Draft out of Marquette University.

Patton, 6-11, played in 35 contests over one season at Creighton, averaging 12.9 points, 6.2 rebounds, 1.4 blocks and 0.9 steals per game en route to earning Big East Freshman of the Year honors. Patton, 20, led the Big East and ranked second nationally with a field goal percentage of 67.6%, which stands as the highest field goal percentage of any freshman from a major conference in NCAA history. The Riverdale, Georgia, native also shot 53.3% from the three-point during his line season as a Bluejay. Patton sat out the 2015-16 season as a redshirt.

Dunn (6-4, 205), selected fifth overall by the Timberwolves in the 2016 NBA Draft, appeared in 78 games and averaged 3.8 points, 2.1 rebounds and 2.8 assists in 17.1 minutes per game last season. Dunn won back-to-back Big East Player of the Year awards while at Providence (2014-15 and 2015-16). He averaged 15.6 points and 7.5 assists in his junior season, and finished with 16.4 points and 6.2 assists in his senior season.

Bulls trade Jimmy Butler to Timberwolves

LaVine (6-5, 185), picked 13th overall by Minnesota in the 2014 NBA Draft, averaged 18.9 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.0 assists in 47 games last season. LaVine shot .459 from the field, .387 from long range and .836 from the foul line. For his career, LaVine is averaging 13.7 points, 2.9 rebounds and 3.2 assists in 206 games and shooting .445 overall, .378 from 3-point range and .821 from the stripe. After his first year in the league, LaVine was named to the 2014-15 All-Rookie Second Team.

Markkanen (7-0, 230), the seventh overall selection in this year’s Draft, averaged 15.6 points and 7.2 rebounds in his one season at Arizona. Markkanen posted shooting marks of .492 from the field, .423 from distance and .835 from the foul line. The Finland native was named Third-Team All-American by the Associated Press, Sporting News and the National Association of Basketball Coaches, and First-Team All-Pac-12 last season. Over the last 25 years, Markkanen and Kevin Durant are the players to record at least 69 3-pointers and 266 rebounds in their freshman year.

Report: Bulls will trade Jimmy Butler to Timberwolves

After 14 months of relative inactivity, Tom Thibodeau made what may be the biggest splash in Timberwolves history on Thursday night.

Minnesota acquired all-star forward Jimmy Butler and the No. 16 pick, which it used to select Creighton center Justin Patton, in Thursday night’s draft in exchange for Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn and the No. 7 pick, a source confirmed.

Chicago used the No. 7 pick on Arizona forward Lauri Markkanen, who was a likely candidate to land in Minnesota prior to the trade.

– St Paul Pioneer Press

Rajon Rondo injured: broken thumb

Rajon Rondo injured: broken thumb

Just when things were looking up for the Chicago Bulls, surprisingly up 2-0 in their postseason series against the No. 1 East seed Boston Celtics, guard Rajon Rondo has been lost to injury.

Rondo injured his right hand in Game 2 at Boston on Tuesday night, and underwent a subsequent exam and x-rays that confirmed a thumb fracture.

Surgery is not required for this injury, and he is out indefinitely.

According to the Chicago Tribune, “Jerian Grant will start in Rondo’s place. “My teammates have confidence in me,” he said Friday. Jimmy Butler will be the primary ballhandler. “I’ve been doing it all year,” Butler said.”

Chicago Bulls center Robin Lopez and Toronto Raptors forward Serge Ibaka have each been suspended one game without pay for throwing punches at one another during an altercation, it was announced today by Kiki VanDeWeghe, Executive Vice President, Basketball Operations.

Raptors assistant coach Jamaal Magloire has been fined $15,000 for pushing Bulls forward Nikola Mirotic and acting as other than a peacemaker as part of the same altercation.

The incident, for which Ibaka and Lopez were assessed technical fouls and ejected from the game, occurred with 3:58 remaining in the third quarter of the Raptors’ 122-120 overtime win over the Bulls at Air Canada Centre on March 21.

Lopez will serve his suspension tonight when the Bulls host the Detroit Pistons at United Center.

Ibaka will serve his suspension on Thursday when the Raptors visit the Miami Heat at AmericanAirlines Arena.

Dwyane Wade season-ending elbow injuries

The Bulls are in 10th place in the Eastern conference, behind the 9th-place Miami Heat, and their season will continue without the services of veteran shooting guard Dwyane Wade.

This morning, Wade underwent an MRI for a right elbow injury suffered in the fourth quarter of last night’s game against the Memphis Grizzlies. The results of the MRI showed a sprain and a small fracture in the elbow.

The Bulls say Wade will be out the remainder of the regular season. This leaves open the possibility that he might return for the playoffs, should Chicago actually rally and reach the postseason.

According to the Chicago Sun-Times, “in the 57 games Wade played in his first year as a member of his hometown team, he not only played Robin to Butler’s Batman in the scoring department, but was also grabbing 4.5 rebounds, handing out 3.9 assists and nabbing 1.5 steals per game, as well as emerging as a big-time leader in a relatively young locker room. Butler has been the team’s No. 1 option late in games, but Wade was definitely 1B. Now, coach Fred Hoiberg will have to figure out which one of his young players can step up, with the likes of Denzel Valentine, Nikola Mirotic, Paul Zipser and Michael Carter-Williams each possibilities to replace Wade’s 30.2 minutes per game.”

bulls trade taj gibson

The Chicago Bulls announced today that the team has acquired guards Cameron Payne and Anthony Morrow (MORE-roe), and center/forward Joffrey Lauvergne (LA-vern) from the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for forwards Taj Gibson, Doug McDermott and a 2018 second-round draft pick.

In his second year in the NBA, Payne (6-3, 185) is averaging 5.3 points, 1.6 rebounds and 2.0 assists in 20 games played after missing 35 due to a right foot fracture and two to a D-League assignment with the Oklahoma City Blue. He has scored in double figures twice this season. In 77 career contests (one start), Payne holds averages of 5.1 points, 1.5 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 13.2 minutes played. He has career shooting averages of .385 from the field, .319 from long range and .821 from the foul line.

In his ninth NBA season, Morrow (6-5, 210) has appeared in 40 games (seven starts) and is posting averages of 5.8 points, 0.7 rebounds and 0.5 assists in 15.7 minutes per game. He is shooting .387 from the field, .294 from three and .885 from the line for the year. He has eight games with double-digit scoring, and a season high of 21 points vs. Detroit on Nov. 26. In 555 career contests (142 starts), Morrow is averaging 9.5 points, 2.2 rebounds and 0.9 assists in 22.0 minutes. For his career, Morrow is shooting .447 overall, .417 from distance (5th among active players) and .878 from the stripe. In 2008-09, his three-point percentage of .467 ranked first in the league, and he has had five total seasons where his three-point percentage has ranked in the top 10.

In his third season in the NBA, Lauvergne (6-11, 220) is averaging 5.7 points, 3.7 rebounds and 1.0 assists across 50 games this year while shooting .455 from the field, .346 from three and .638 from the charity stripe. He’s scored in double figures eight times with a season high of 17 points on Feb. 13 at Washington, which tied Russell Westbrook for the Thunder high in that game. In 133 career appearances (16 starts), Lauvergne is posting averages of 6.3 points, 4.1 rebounds, 0.9 assists in 15.4 minutes played. He is shooting .480 from the field, .293 from distance and .755 from the line for his career. Lauvergne will be the fourth international player on the Bulls roster.

Gibson was selected by the Bulls with the 26th overall pick in the 2009 NBA Draft. He is averaging 11.6 points, 7.0 rebounds, 1.1 assists and 0.91 blocks in 27.3 minutes per game this season and is shooting .521 from the field, .167 from three and .714 from the line.

In 562 career contests (229 starts) with Chicago, Gibson held averages of 9.4 points, 6.4 rebounds, 1.0 assist and 1.24 blocks and shot .495 from the field and .694 from the stripe. Gibson ranks in the top-10 of several Bulls franchise leader categories, including games played (10th), offensive rebounds (sixth), defensive rebounds (ninth) and blocks (fifth). Gibson also appeared in 56 playoff games (seven starts) for the Bulls and averaged 8.0 points, 4.9 rebounds and 1.16 blocks while shooting .499 overall and .691 at the free-throw line.

In his third season, McDermott is averaging 10.2 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.0 assist and 24.5 minutes in 44 games. McDermott is shooting .445 from the field, .376 from long range and .881 at the line. For his career, McDermott is posting averages of 8.2 points, 2.3 rebounds and 0.7 assists and 20.2 minutes across 161 games (eight starts). He is shooting .445 overall, .399 from three and .849 from the foul line. In three career playoff games for Chicago, McDermott averaged 1.7 points in 3.3 minutes of action.

Rajon Rondo has spent a number of recent Bulls games sitting and watching Bulls games. It’s good work if you can find it. He finally got minutes off the bench Tuesday night. But in general, here’s CSN Chicago reporting on the situation prior to tonight’s game:

Rajon Rondo still benched by Bulls

If the Rajon Rondo benching was clear to some, it wasn’t to everybody even as Rondo prepares for a one-game exodus from the pine.

Namely Rondo himself, and one wonders where the saga is headed next as the Bulls near the midseason mark with no resolution to a situation involving their first free-agent signing.

“I don’t know,” said Rondo as the Bulls’ litany of absences have prompted them to turn back to his direction as they’ll play the Wizards Tuesday night at the Verizon Center.

“I know a little bit of what’s going on, but it’s out of my control really, as far as what they have going on. So I’m going to have to play better.”

Jimmy Butler scores 52 points against Hornets

The embodiment of the Eastern Conference was on full display at the United Center, as the Bulls and Charlotte Hornets are a little closer to finding out who they are but the difference between good and mediocre is slim.

So slim Dwyane Wade’s absence didn’t tilt the pendulum even more to the Hornets’ direction as they came in with confidence from a win last week, but the tables were turned in a big way.

An unexpected energy boost helped them early and their remaining star closed the night as Jimmy Butler pulled off yet another miracle at the United Center, scoring 27 of his season-high 52 points in the second half to help the Bulls to a 118-111 win over the Hornets Monday night.

Jumper after jumper, most in the face of defensive stopper Nic Batum, Butler did virtually everything in the fourth—and even reached the 50-point plateau for the second time in his career thanks to Hornets coach Steve Clifford picking up a technical late with Butler hitting the free throw.

– CSN Chicago

Quick Take: Butler shot 15-24 FG and 21-22 FT for 52 points, 12 rebounds, six assists, one block and three steals. In general, though, the Bulls are struggling these days. They’re 17-18, but the biggest issue right now is point guard Rajon Rondo, who had been a starter but lately spends entire games sitting on the bench. He played 11 minutes Friday, zero minutes Saturday and zero minutes last night. What will happen with him is unclear.

Bulls bench Rajon Rondo

Bulls bench Rajon Rondo

Rajon Rondo stood for plenty of moments during the Bulls’ 116-96 beating at the hands of the Milwaukee Bucks, the first full game of his benching after sitting the entire second half Friday night against the Pacers.

The Bulls guard stood at his locker moments later, candidly and honestly answering questions from the media about his future — one that seems to be in doubt some 30 games into his first season as a Bull.

“Absolutely,” said Rondo when asked if he accomplished enough in the NBA for the Bulls to accommodate him on a trade or some transaction to allow him to seek another team should the benching continue.

“Gar (Forman, Bulls GM) and I will have a talk. We’ll talk tonight and go from there. I don’t know if it’s right now, maybe the next 30, 18, 45 minutes. Tonight, before ’17 (the clock strikes midnight).”

By then, one wonders if the Bulls and Rondo will be working on a buyout to free him from the remainder of his contract — one that includes a $3 million buyout that has to be exercised before next July.

“No, I’m not surprised. Not surprised,” Rondo said. “It’s been a tough season. Certain buttons are being pushed and the Bulls are trying to figure things out.”\

CSN Chicago

Quick Take: This is now a common theme with Rondo. If he can’t succeed alongside the likes of Dwyane Wade and Jimmy Butler, it’s hard to guess who he’d fit in with at this point.

Bulls waive RJ Hunter

The Chicago Bulls requested waivers on guard R.J. Hunter today.

During his time with the Bulls, Hunter (6-5, 185) appeared in three games and grabbed one rebound in nine total minutes. He signed with the Bulls on Oct. 27, 2016.

The Bulls roster now stands at 14.

Here’s the Bulls.com blog with a look at Wednesday’s Bulls-Hawks game:

jimmy butler

Welcoming back to your box of chocolates Chicago Bulls. That’s right, you just never know what you are going to get.

Sure, you’ll generally get good performances from Jimmy Butler and Dwyane Wade, Butler with 39 points Wednesday and Wade 25 in the Bulls 115-107 loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

But a Bulls team that was leading the league in number of rebounds and rebounding margin was outrebounded 49-30, outscored 20-9 on second chance points. A Bulls team that was 25th in the league in steals plundered Atlanta for 15 steals, six by Butler and five by Wade. A Bulls team second poorest in the NBA in forcing turnovers harassed Atlanta into 24 turnovers for a whopping 38 points. But a Bulls team allowing opponents some of the best shooting games of the season also couldn’t stop the Hawks, Atlanta with an early 17-point lead, 50.6 percent overall shooting and pulling away down the stretch after the Bulls got within 103-101 with 4:55 remaining in the game.

Derrick Rose isn’t a Bull anymore, but Chicago will always be a part of him. Here’s the Bulls.com blog reporting:

No, the parade Friday wasn’t for Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah returning to Chicago.

But as much as Rose and Noah hoped, wished and envisioned it would be them someday making Chicago feel proud, Rose, nevertheless, said he was thrilled for Chicago.

“Just coming back here, it felt good, to tell you the truth,” Rose told reporters after Knicks practice in the United Center. “Especially the Cubs winning. I felt the energy of the city. The city is on some type of high right now. It’s great for the city with everything that we’ve been going through, the killings, everything. We need some positive light shined here.”

Rose, the Englewood native and Simeon High School star, has been part of the Chicago fabric for almost 20 years, as a prep basketball phenomenon and then as the No. 1 draft pick of the Bulls and the NBA’s youngest ever Most Valuable Player. Though Rose did so unobtrusively, he was one of the more community oriented Chicago athletes. He often joined Father Michael Phleger in the youth social activism in the troubled South Side and made the largest ever charitable gift of a Chicago athlete, a $1 million donation to the non profit After School Matters for teenage out of school programs.

Bulls exercise contract options on Bobby Portis, Jerian Grant and Doug McDermott

The Chicago Bulls have exercised their fourth-year option on forward Doug McDermott, and the third-year options on guard Jerian Grant and forward Bobby Portis.

By exercising these options, they will be under contract with the Bulls for the 2017-18 season.

McDermott (6-8, 223) played in 81 games (four starts) in 2015-16 after appearing in only 36 games during his rookie season. He recorded 37 double-digit scoring games last season, including a career-high 30 points on Feb. 19, 2016, versus Toronto – after only posting four games with 10+ points in 2014-15. McDermott’s 3-point percentage of .425 in 2015-16 ranked fifth in the NBA. The Creighton product owns career averages of 7.5 points and 2.0 rebounds while shooting .445 from the field, .410 from three and .828 from the free-throw line. McDermott was selected 11th overall in the 2014 NBA Draft and came to the Bulls in a draft-night deal with the Denver Nuggets on June 26, 2014.

Grant (6-4, 198) was selected 19th overall in the 2015 NBA Draft, with the pick originally owned by the Washington Wizards and subsequently traded to New York via Atlanta. In his rookie year, Grant played in 76 games (six starts) and posted 5.6 points, 1.9 rebounds and 2.3 assists (eighth among rookies) in 16.6 minutes per game. His .780 free-throw percentage ranked sixth among rookies. In his final year at Notre Dame in 2014-15, Grant earned NCAA First Team All-America honors from The Associated Press.

Portis (6-11, 250) appeared in 62 games (four starts) in 2015-16. In his rookie year, he became the first Bull to record 20 points and 10 rebounds in one of his first five career games since 1999. Portis also became the 25th player in Bulls history to log a double-digit scoring effort in their NBA debut (Nov. 3 at Charlotte), and his field goal percentage of .714 is the highest of any Bull in his first game. He owns careers averages of 7.0 points, 5.4 rebounds and 0.8 assists in 17.8 minutes per game while shooting .427 from the field, .308 from behind the arc and .727 from the line. The Arkansas product was named SEC Player of the Year in his second and final season as a Razorback.

Bulls sign R.J. Hunter

Bulls sign R.J. Hunter

The Chicago Bulls have signed guard R.J. Hunter.

Hunter (6-5, 185) was selected in the first round (28th overall) by the Boston Celtics in the 2015 NBA Draft. In his rookie season, the 23-year-old appeared in 36 games and averaged 2.7 ppg, 0.4 apg, 1.0 rpg and shot .302 from the field, .367 from downtown and .857 from the line.

During his tenure at Georgia State University, Hunter averaged 18.4 ppg, 2.4 apg, 4.8 rpg and shot .354 from the field, .423 from downtown and .853 from the free throw line. Hunter became the Panthers’ all-time leading scorer (1,819 points) in three seasons at Georgia State, and he was also named Sun Belt Player of the Year in both the 2013-14 and 2014-15 seasons.

His full name is Ronald Jordan Hunter.

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