Chicago Bulls: Lonzo Ball revenge game, but no 300-pound Zion

Chicago Bulls (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)
Chicago Bulls (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images) /

When the 1-0 Chicago Bulls take on the 0-1 New Orleans Pelicans on Friday night, it will be a meaningful game for a couple of reasons.

First, it’s the Bulls’ home opener for the 2021-2022 season. This is the first time Bulls fans in Chicago will get to see the new-look roster in action — one that’s been a much-anticipated sight for a few months now.

Second, it will be the first time point guard Lonzo Ball faces his former team as a member of the Bulls. Ball has proven in just a few preseason games and the season opener that he was exactly what the Bulls needed.

While Ball laces up against his former team, he won’t see one particular former teammate of his in Zion Williamson.

Lonzo Ball will prove the Chicago Bulls got the better of the offseason deal, while New Orleans misses a disgruntled star.

The Pelicans are without star forward Zion Williamson, who underwent an offseason procedure on a broken foot. While he’s been recovering from said procedure, though, Williamson has apparently failed to stay in shape.

Williamson showed up to Pelicans media day weighing “north of 300 pounds,” according to Bleacher Report’s Jake Fischer.

The Pelicans might be in for yet another divorce between a star big man and the organization, depending upon how the relationship between Williamson and New Orleans develops in coming months.

Regardless of Williamson’s status, the Bulls will be in for a tough test as they try to defend the talented big man, Brandon Ingram.

Overall, the Bulls are a more talented team and, although Ingram will get his numbers, Chicago should pull out a victory — at least, on paper.

Ball leads a revamped Bulls roster that includes DeMar DeRozan and Alex Caruso as two highly-important offseason additions. Throughout the limited action we’ve seen from Ball, it’s fair to say that he is going to be excellent in Chicago.

The fact that New Orleans didn’t exactly build around Ball, or give him the right type of scorers and offense to thrive in, is puzzling. Working with Zach LaVine, Nikola Vucevic and DeRozan, Ball has plenty of options to use offensively.

It has been evident thus far that the Pelicans lost the offseason deal between them and Chicago. Even though they appeared ready to lose Ball no matter what, it still seems odd that they would give up on a big, talented, defensive-minded point guard like him.

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This game should be a statement from not only Ball, but the Bulls, that they are the better team and are out to make big things happen this season. Look for Ball to have a strong showing against his former team, but for the Bulls to stay balanced and come out victorious.