Chicago Bulls: Another failed Draft Lottery in the GarPax era

Chicago Bulls (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Chicago Bulls (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Bulls came up short again in the NBA Draft Lottery, receiving the seventh overall pick for the 2019 draft. Will this have any effect on the job security of John Paxson and Gar Forman?

The Chicago Bulls went into Tuesday’s NBA Draft Lottery with cautious optimism. The Bulls had a 12.5 percent chance at getting the top pick, but fans hoped they could at least salvage the second pick if they didn’t win the lottery.

That didn’t happen, and the Bulls will select seventh in the 2019 NBA Draft. It’s yet another NBA Draft disappointment for the Bulls and their fans.

It wasn’t a shock that the Bulls didn’t get a top level pick in the draft, but getting the seventh pick is a huge punch in the gut. It’s the same spot in the draft the team had in 2017 and in last year’s draft.

2018 pick Wendell Carter Jr. was hurt most of last season, and this pick is likely going to be a player that needs a year or two of development before making an impact in the NBA.

It was clear going into the draft that Duke forward Zion Williamson would be picked first, and the second pick would most likely be Murray State point guard Ja Morant. Either of those players would’ve been a dream addition for the Bulls. Oh, well.

Instead, a report resurfaced on Tuesday night from Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times that the Bulls are open to trading their pick for LA Lakers point guard Lonzo Ball.

That would be a classic GarPax move, as Paxson publicly stated that current point guard Kris Dunn “Has to come back with the mindset of being a true point guard” next season. That’s not exactly an endorsement.

With no other promising star prospects lower on the board, it seems pretty likely that the Bulls could trade Dunn and their pick for Ball.

The complicating factor is that the Lakers beat the odds and received the fourth overall pick in the 2019 draft. They may not even be interested in the Bulls pick now.

In addition, Ball comes with some baggage that includes his obnoxious father Lavar Ball. While a possible collapse of the family’s apparel company made the older Ball quieter, his presence still looms.

This type of drama is something the Bulls don’t need, and I doubt coach Jim Boylen would be thrilled to welcome a player who brings a mini-media circus along with him.

GarPax and Bulls President Michael Reinsdorf may still make a push for Ball, but will the Lakers even listen?

We now face the even more frightening possibility that GarPax will try and find a raw talent to select at seventh. With a shallower talent pool than 2017, don’t expect a player like Lauri Markkanen to be available.

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The team has just over a month until the 2019 NBA Draft which takes place on June 20th in Brooklyn. It’ll be interesting to see what develops in the coming weeks.