Nets Could Make Blockbuster Trade For Bulls’ Zach LaVine

Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls, Brooklyn Nets, NBA Trade Rumors
NBA Analysis Network

After a disappointing 2022-23 NBA season, the Chicago Bulls appear primed to be one of the teams to undergo significant changes. Among those possible logical moves could be to trade veteran players like Zach LaVine that could bring in assets to enter a long-term rebuild.

LaVine had a solid season, averaging 24.8 points, 4.5 rebounds, and 4.2 assists. However, the 28-year-old finished just what was the first of a five-year, $215.2 million contract. Given his history of major knee injuries, does it make sense to keep LaVine as he continues to near 30 with a team that doesn’t have an outlook to contend?

The Bulls lack much for assets to make meaningful changes around an already flawed roster. Nikola Vucevic is also set to reach free agency during the upcoming offseason. Patrick Williams has yet to make a significant leap in his development. There is also too much noise throughout the season about LaVine’s discontent with his role. Would a trade make the most sense?

In a hypothetical trade piece, Bleacher Report constructed some trade ideas for some of the NBA’s most “hopeless” teams. Among the various deals was one that involved LaVine being sent to the Brooklyn Nets in exchange for Ben Simmons, Cam Thomas, a 2023 first-round pick, a 2025 first-round pick (via PHX), a 2027 first-round pick (HOU holds swap rights), and a 2027 first-round pick (via PHI).

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls & Brooklyn Nets Updates

The ultimate return would be a terrible contract in Simmons that spans through the 2024-25 season, an unproven young guard in Thomas, three likely underwhelming first-round picks, and a future first-round pick swap. It doesn’t seem like much to work with for a team that would undergo the rebuilding process.

Given how bad of a contract Simmons is signed to, it requires significant compensation for any team to acquire him in a trade. It’s become increasingly less likely that he ever bounces back into being the NBA All-Star talent he was before asking to be traded from the Philadelphia 76ers the more he looks ineffective on the court and sits out for long stretches due to injuries.

NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls & Brooklyn Nets Updates

If the Bulls were to trade LaVine during the offseason, it would be a logical option to pursue. Taking on a contract as bad as Simmons’ would likely be one of the less attractive trade returns they could get for LaVine. There are likely plenty of other more favorable options to consider.

For the Nets, they do need a player that can fill a high-volume scoring role alongside breakout star Mikal Bridges. The only issue is that LaVine likely isn’t quite the caliber of player worth pushing so many chips into the center of the table to acquire. Getting off of Simmons’ contract would be a great option, but regardless, a more dynamic player would likely be the best option.

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