Kings Face Fit Questions With DeMar DeRozan: What’s Next For Bulls?

DeMar DeRozan, Chicago Bulls, NBA
Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

The latest big move acquisition of the NBA offseason was the Sacramento Kings trading in their chips. After missing the playoffs last year, the Kings went further into win-now mode with this trade. For disgruntled star DeMar DeRozan, the asking price was Harrison Barnes and Chris Duarte. Throw in a couple of second-round picks, and the Bulls were ready to dance.

For a team pushing their chips to the Center, it was the second major trade in nearly two years. Earlier, the team was keen on Domantas Sabonis and sent future All-Star Tyrese Haliburton in a hefty package. Immediately, the team broke a 20-year-long playoff drought. However, this win-now move doesn’t fully fit in with their roster.

The fit issue with DeMar DeRozan

In their current iteration, Sacramento has been the quintessential pace-and-space team. Running out in transition, the Kings bomb away threes. As a result, their roster construction had a strong 3-and-D inclination. The team was loaded with sweet-shooting wings in Kevin Huerter, Malik Monk, Keegan Murray, Harrison Barnes, and Chris Duarte.

But two of those names are now out in favor of Deebo. While a bigger name in terms of star power, DeMar prefers a slower pace where he can ‘cook’ in the midrange. But, in De’Aaron Fox and Domantas Sabonis, the team already has two bonafide creators. Even off the bench, Malik Monk has become the perfect contributor, making some Sixth Man of the Year noise last season.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: DeMar DeRozan, Chicago Bulls, Sacramento Kings Updates

Further, both Fox and Sabonis struggle from long range, making the availability of multiple shooters necessary. DeRozan doesn’t offer the same spacing, which could be detrimental. Further, at three years and $76 million, Mr. Toronto’s contract might be too big to trade away easily. At nearly 35, the six-time All-Star isn’t getting any younger, and the contract becomes more untradeable with each passing season.

The problems for Sacramento don’t end there. As a unit, the Kings have been among the bottom half of the NBA in terms of defense. For all of his offensive upside, DeMar has never been an above-average defender. Pairing him alongside Sabonis might be a recipe for a porous defense.

Chicago assuredly headed for a rebuild

When the season came to a close, the Chicago Bulls were at a crossroads. Their gamble in 2021 had not paid dividends. Instead, they had a bloated and expensive roster hovering around .500. Either continuing down the path of mediocrity or retooling and rebuilding the roster again were the only options.

The team has given a clear answer to its fanbase through two trades. Parting ways with arguably the team’s two best players, Chicago is in rebuild mode. Thankfully, the returns for both instances have been young players that fit the Coby White timeline.

NBA NEWS & RUMORS: DeMar DeRozan, Chicago Bulls, Sacramento Kings Updates

A Most Improved Player candidate, White came into his last season and is a genuine building block for the Bulls. In Josh Giddey, acquired from the Alex Caruso trade, and Chris Duarte, the team has two players who fit the timeline and could develop into something.

Still, Chicago lacks serious draft capital to facilitate their rebuild. With the trio of Zach Lavine, Lonzo Ball, and Nikola Vucevic, Jerry Reinsdorf has to be on the hunt for draft assets. A decent return for those three could kickstart the rebuild in overdrive and position the Windy City as a team to watch out for shortly.

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