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Thursday, June 30

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« Jackpot! Bulls Win #1 Pick! Hawks: Let's Take It Outside »

Bulls Tue May 20 2008

They Could Always Trade Down For the Lopez Twins

The Miami Heat did everything they could to get their hands on the top pick of the 2008 draft. They shut down their franchise player in March and, in an unprecedented move, their head coach left the bench mid-season to scout college talent. However, the basketball gods have frowned upon this wanton and scarcely veiled attempt at tanking for the top pick and instead have delivered it to Chicago.

However improbable it may seem (given the Bulls' lottery odds - 98.3 percent improbable to be precise), the hoop deities have seen the devotion of Bulls fans through thick and thin. They even forced them to acknowledge as much in the ad campaign for the '04-'05 season. What followed were two years of tremendous overachievement follow by two years of chronic underachievement (it was too painful to revisit this until a a couple hours ago), but these were merely Herculean labors to deliver us our much-need superstar.

Now, as Shaz posted earlier, is it Beasley or Rose? While the Bulls' most glaring Achilles heel throughout the Paxon era has been the lack of a consistent low-post scoring presence, Pax is not likely to jump all over Beasley just yet. Consider this: the highest impact players to enter the league in past three seasons are undoubtably point guards Deron Williams and Chris Paul, who morphed their respective cellar dwellers into championship contenders in only two seasons. Scouts have tagged Rose as a hybrid of the two and he doesn't seem to carry the same baggage as Beasley.

The Bulls will continue to fall short until they find a way to light up scoreboard without the low-percentage jumpers and threes they've relied on thus far. But let's be honest Kirk Henrich backers, there is a gaping hole at point guard. As competent as Henrich has been at the one-spot, anyone who watched this season can attest he was clearly more effective and comfortable when Skiles/Boylan slid him over to shooting guard and let Duhon handle the point guard's duties.

While there were undoubtably high fives flying all around the Berto Center this evening, the upcoming weeks will determine what direction the franchise will take. Paxon has enjoyed a fairly long leash from owner Jerry Reinsdorf until now, but with a choice of two superstar-caliber players to add to a talented young nucleus there will be no more excuses. For the Bulls, it's world champs or bust.

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