The Chicago Bulls may have listened to a few trade offers for Jimmy Butler just to get a feel for what’s out there. However, in the end, it was all about who comes back, who’s not and who might be joining. The Bulls were a Rajon Rondo injury away from upsetting the No. 1 seeded Boston Celtics. With Rondo out after two games, the Celtics took control of the series and put an end to a roller coaster of a season for the Bulls. Now, there are whispers of a possible Kyle Lowry signing in the Chi.
Lowry informed the Toronto Raptors that he will not pick up his $12M option this year and instead hit the Free Agent market.
While many and probably Lowry himself pictured the All-Star PG heading back home to play for the Philadelphia 76ers, that all changed after the 76ers and Celtics made a huge trade to acquire the No. 1 pick in the NBA Draft this Thursday. The 76ers will select Markell Fultz, all but shutting the door on a Lowry Homecoming.
With reports surfacing that Lowry told the Raptors front office he always wanted to return to the team, it makes you wonder. Did he really want to leave or did the 76ers trade change his outlook? But there is another possibility Lowry must consider– the Bulls.
The Bulls chemistry is a mess with Rondo, Wade, and Butler not all on the same page. Too many issues during the season but this is not a young team. The Bulls are led by vets that must know to put winning first. Rondo, when focused on the game of basketball, produced to the tune of 8 points, 5 rebounds, and 7 assists but done so in only 27 minutes per. Lowry, while with the Raptors averaged 22 points, 4 rebounds, and 7 assists per. Looking at the numbers, it’s clear that Lowry is the easy choice. But not so fast.
The Bulls are built to win now. Lowry has a bad habit of disappearing in the playoffs while Rondo knows what it’s like to be a member of the last team standing. Then to add more intrigue to the Bulls outlook is what happened during the 2016-17 NBA Playoffs. The Raptors would go on to beat the young Milwaukee Bucks with Lowry doing some heavy lifting, however, against the Cavs he went down with an injury and was lost for the remainder of the playoffs. With Lowry, it’s either hit or miss. Last season he went cold from the floor and this year he was injured.
Rondo, on the other hand, decided to play his best ball of the season when his team needed him most. Against MVP candidate, Isaiah Thomas, Rondo played as it if was 2011. Despite the issue that may have been going on between Dwyane Wade, Butler, and Rondo– it didn’t show in the first 2 games as the Bulls went up 2-0. However, Rondo went down and the Bulls fell apart.
With Lowry being free and Wade and Butler not too happy with a possible Rondo return, it may be time for the team to look outside its comfort zone. Rondo is good but the team doesn’t mesh well. This could turn into another Celtics and Dallas Mavericks incident and all parties involved will come out on the losing end.
Lowry will be a great addition but should Bulls put their title hopes on a player that has been known to vanish or a player who has been known to destroy a locker room?