Chicago Bulls: 3 potential effects of the Lauri Markkanen injury

Chicago Bulls (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images)
Chicago Bulls (Photo by Abbie Parr/Getty Images) /
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Zach LaVine Chicago Bulls
Chicago Bulls (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

The Bulls become Zach’s team

Of course, NBA players are professionals. Most of them have that competitive drive within them to win at all costs. LaVine is coming off a full offseason of work and has dropped about 25 pounds since returning from his ACL injury originally.

In the best shape of his life and feeling quicker and stronger, LaVine should be poised for a breakout year. Without Markkanen, it is clear who “the man” is going to be — it’s LaVine. Heck, even with Markkanen, we might have seen LaVine take the reigns as the go-to guy.

The front office wants everyone to believe that Markkanen is the franchise player, and that’s fine. But, LaVine is certainly not going to take a back seat. He’s the kind of player who wants the ball in his hands and desires to make plays. Without Markkanen, he’ll have even more opportunities.

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Despite the Bulls potentially being awful in the win column, LaVine could find himself busting loose. Being the obvious face of the team for two months could do wonders for LaVine’s game, confidence and leadership among his teammates.

I never wanted it to happen like this, but LaVine’s chances of breaking into stardom are even higher without Markkanen on the floor. I would not be surprised to see him come out of the gates swinging and averaging well over 20 points per game while on a mission to prove he can indeed be a good defender.

Silver linings are a tough thing to find sometimes, but this might just be one.