Chicago Bulls: Daniel Gafford reminiscent of another recent pick

Chicago Bulls (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Chicago Bulls (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) /

With pick no. 38 in the 2019 NBA Draft, the Chicago Bulls snagged Daniel Gafford who should remind us of someone very familiar.

When the Chicago Bulls found themselves on the clock for the second time on Thursday night, they decided to go somewhat of a familiar route. At no. 38 overall, the Bulls selected Arkansas big man Daniel Gafford.

If you’re thinking what I was thinking immediately following the pick, your mind would have led you to former Bulls forward Bobby Portis.

Gafford comes out of the University of Arkansas after earning First Team All SEC this past season, as well as making the SEC All Defensive Team in both of his seasons with the Razorbacks.

Like Portis, Gafford is a long, high-energy big man who produced strong numbers in his final year at Arkansas. In fact, the numbers are eerily similar. Take a look at their final seasons with the team:

Portis: 17.5 points, 8.9 rebounds, 1.4 blocks, 96.9 DEF Rating

Gafford: 16.9 points, 8.7 rebounds, 2.0 blocks, 95.7 DEF Rating

The points and rebounds are almost identical, but Gafford blocked more shots than Portis did in his final season.

Another aspect which Gafford has Portis beat is straight-up field goal percentage. Last year, Gafford shot 66.0 percent from the field. In Portis’ final year with the Razorbacks, he shot 53.6 percent.

Now, the one area which Gafford does not compare to Portis is from beyond the arc. In today’s NBA, it certainly helps to have some range as a big man. Gafford has zero outside shot, while Portis has developed his even more as a pro.

You won’t find Gafford scoring much outside the paint, but when he does, he likes to do it with authority. He is also a phenomenal defender, which is something the Bulls have been missing off the bench within their front court.

Next. Bulls take Coby White at no. 7. dark

Gafford offers the possibility of becoming a staple in the Bulls’ rotation as a formidable inside scorer who can defend at a high level. That sounds like a Jim Boylen type of pick to me, and honestly, I am very happy with it. Count Gafford as one of the safer options for the Bulls in the second round, which is something you typically do not find.