Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Love Doesn't Answer Chicago Bulls' Problems


Let me start off by saying this, Kevin Love is a great basketball player. When he is on his game, he is one of the 10 best players in the league, undoubtedly. But for Chicago Bulls fans to get excited about his coming over to the team, is wrong. He is a great player, but he doesn’t provide anything that the Bulls don’t already have, and doesn’t fill in what they desperately need.

Love is a guy who can score and rebound in bunches. He’s had multiple 40-plus point games, and has even had games where he has gotten 25 rebounds. But the problem is that the Bulls don’t need that right now. Between Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer, who people seem to forget hasn’t left town yet, they can get 30 rebounds per night, and while his scoring numbers are great, he’s just a copy of Boozer, a man who can be fed the ball for a mid-range jumper, but can’t create his own shot by dribbling around.

The Bulls need that desperately. a guy who can be given the ball at the top of arc and dribble and drive, then either hit a lay-up or step-back. The Bulls don’t need another Boozer, who is just more skilled.

Plus, the team already has a very solid front-court with Noah and Taj Gibson. While the small forward position is technically still the front-court, the other big name being thrown around, Carmelo Anthony, plays a style that fits the back-court, a guy who can dribble and drive.

While I don’t think it’s a bad move at all to bring Love over to the Bulls, I think the team should use their efforts elsewhere, to either sway Anthony or multiple guards that can score, and not a lower-risk, higher-reward Carlos Boozer.

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Tags: Carlos Boozer Chicago Bulls Joakim Noah Kevin Love Taj Gibson

  • jackstone

    This ‘writer’ is a clown ! He has virtually no idea of how Kevin Love plays ball or what he brings to the table. Firstly, he’s not one of the 10 best players when he’s ‘on his game’, he’s one of the 3 or 4 best. You just can’t compare a guy who is putting up 26 points and 12 boards a game to Boozer, who is putting up 13 and 8. Moreover, Kevin Love is nothing like Boozer in that, not only is he a vastly better rebounder, but he’s not limited to being fed a mid-range jumper either. Love shot 37.6% from 3 this season, on better than 6 tries per game. He also drew 8 free throws a game, converting 82%. Boozer, uh, he shot ZERO THREES this season, and drew just 2.5 free throws a game, converting only 72%. This explains why Kevin Love’s shooting percentage (true) was 10% higher than Boozer’s (59% to 49%). That’s the difference between elite, like James Harden, and washing out of the league, like Boozer and Willie Green.

    Beyond this, the writer hasn’t apparently watched Kevin Love play in about 4 years. He initiates tons of offense. He has numerous plays where he will initiate passes out of the high post, or just murder players in a pick and roll, because he can not only set incredibly effective picks, given his strength and smarts, but he can roll to the basket or pop out for a 3. Boozer ? You can’t run sets around him. Love has tons of other plays, such as his fake post-up/backdoor cut, where he reverses on his defender and races back out to the three point line.

    Love would make Chicago an instant title favorite. Noah, Gibson and Butler could cover his defensive lapses, when they occur. And he would free them up to jump out on shooter or drives, and trust Love to grab the boards. This would be particularly helpful for a mobile defender like Noah.

    True, they’d still need a couple guards, depending upon Rose. But the could afford to invest in spot up shooters, 3 and D guys, because they’d have a reliable superstar halfcourt scorer, next to Noah and Butler, and hopefully Rose, to carry them through any guard-related droughts.

    That said, alas, Chicago doesn’t have the assets to get him. But if they did, this writer would be shown for all of his ignorance (assuming it hasn’t been done in this post).

    • Kevin Woods

      The only thing I disagree with you on is that the Bulls don’t have the assets to get Love.

      Since Love is gonna be gone from Minnesota anyway, a trade package that includes Taj (gives them a good replacement PF) and both of this years’ 1st round picks (in a deep draft, allowing Minn to start their rebuild) is a very good deal for them.

      It also allows the Bulls to Keep Butler…..and amnestying Boozer gives the Bulls the flexibility to buy-out Mirotic’s contract and bring him over, too (Maybe Boozer can be included in the trade?).

      I find it impossible to believe, though, that Mirotic will ever want to play FOR Minn…..which is why talk of including him in a trade package would be silly.

      • jackstone

        Smart response. But I disagree that Taj Gibson and non-lottery picks will get it done. (Although Taj would actually be pretty good next to Pekovic). The reason for that is that they almost certainly could grab either the # 1 pick (and give back their own picks to Cleveland), or the Philly pick, or the Orlando pick, and if none of them worked out, the Lakers pick, combined with a signed and traded Jordan Hill, is much better than what Chicago can offer. Frankly, Golden State can send back Klay Thomspon and David Lee and lock it down. There’s just so many teams that can offer more.

        But that’s not the end of the story for Chicago. Melo, whom I really don’t like as a player, would actually be perfect in Chicago. Love’s rebounding and intelligence advantages matter less next to Noah and Gibson and Butler, and Chicago wouldn’t have to give anything up. Just amnesty Boozer, trade Snell, and you’d have about 22 million in space. You try to get Melo to take somewhere around 15 million a year to win, and spend the remaining 7 million on a couple guards… Augustin.. maybe Isaiah Thomas, Rodney Stuckey, Nate Robinson.. etc. I don’t think you can get anyone better.

        But with Thibodeau’s defense, and a front line of Butler-Melo-Noah, and Gibson… a few role playing guards would likely bring them to the finals even WITHOUT D-Rose being back or healthy.

        If you like analysis, check out: http://www.basketbrawler.com/

        Good luck with Melo and the off-season. I think that option is realistic and better than most would think.

        • Kevin Woods

          Jack,

          $22 million from Boozer and Snell?

          Have you seen what Snell actually makes? His salary + Boozer’s salary doesn’t (unfortunately) come close to that.

          Boozer = about $16.8 million next season.
          Snell = about $1.5 million next season

          Also….If the Bulls have (lets say) 8 or 9 players under contract and they are right at the ‘salary cap’…..they have a number of ways to continue to sign players (especially those who ended last season with them) even if it means going over the cap.

          That said….we can disagree on what it would take for any team to get Love….it’s all good!

          • jackstone

            Sorry, forgot about the Dunleavy component. Trade his expiring 3 million to a team with space who needs a shooter. That’s a little over 21 million. Been awhile since I ran through this scenario with a friend.

          • Kevin Woods

            Yep….that makes more sense ;-)