Bulls Fans Leaning Towards White With 7th Pick
White Narrowly Beats Culver as Fan's Preferred Choice
Bulls fans are split on who to pick with the 7 pick. Coby White won the fan vote, finishing just ahead of Jarrett Culver, but fans are making cases for, and against, a number of different prospects.
On Monday, Bulls.com posted a poll asking fans to be the general manager for a day, that day being Thursday for the NBA draft.
The Bulls have the No. 7 selection in the draft, at least for now, and the first four picks probably are off limits with No. 4 dominating the news.
The conventional wisdom for this draft is Zion Williamson, Ja Morant and RJ Barrett will be the first three picks in the draft, likely in that order. With the Anthony Davis trade to the Lakers, the New Orleans Pelicans, who have No. 1 and will take Williamson, are said to have put the No. 4 pick up for auction. Vanderbilt point guard Darius Garland, the Gary, Indiana product and son of former NBA player Winston Garland, missed all but five games of his freshman season after meniscus surgery. But he is generally regarded as the best prospect after the top three. With so many young players from the Davis trade, the Pelicans have been searching for a trade and likely a center. The Bulls are reported to be among perhaps a half dozen teams that had discussions with New Orleans.
If the Bulls are unable to make a trade to move up to the No. 4 pick and, it seems, most likely take Garland, they figure to retain the No. 7 pick. It's possible the Bulls could trade down for multiple picks, which was discussed on Bulls.com on Tuesday.
Though history suggests the Bulls likely will retain the No. 7 pick and add to their young core.
So what would you do?
That's the question Bulls.com asked Monday, and the results with more than 2,000 responses were a bit of a surprise.
With the tally Wednesday morning, the most votes at 32 percent, which was not a big surprise, was for North Carolina point guard Coby White, a 6-5 scorer and speedster who could pair with Zach LaVine for a Damian Lillard/C.J. McCollum type offensive backcourt. Though it remains uncertain if White will get to No. 7. The Suns are at No. 6 and are said to be anxious to draft a point guard to team with high scoring Devin Booker. Though good luck trying to get the ball away from those two guys, if it comes to that. Garland is slated to go No. 4 by most observers. But if the Pelicans retain the pick after trading also for Lonzo Ball, they could go for a wing player like Virginia's DeAndre Hunter. With Cleveland at No. 5 having selected a point guard in Collin Sexton last year, Garland and White also conceivably could fall to Nos. 6 and 7. That, of course, would be the Bulls hope.
Though it seems more likely Texas Tech's Jarrett Culver would be available at No. 7. That scenario apparently wouldn't upset Bulls fans. Culver was drawing 29 percent of the vote for the No. 7 selection, just barely behind White and well ahead of Hunter, who is generally a more highly regarded prospect and outplayed Culver in the NCAA title game.
Hunter received just seven percent of the vote while the third favorite among Bulls fans was Duke's Cam Reddish with 19 percent. Reddish among the most likely top 10 selections is regarded as the biggest hit/miss prospect with high level offensive skills while being overshadowed at Duke by Williamson and Barrett. Texas' athletic big man Jaxson Hayes was at the bottom of the vote with just two percent, which, in a sense, was an endorsement for Wendell Carter Jr. despite being smaller than most of the East's top centers.
Here's a sampling of some of the commentary from fans that accompanied the voting:
I want to give the Front office some credit because we're definitely involved in all this trade talk leading up to the draft. I'm very excited to see who we get because they have been so careful to not leak out information that could show our hand. I personally would like to see Coby White get drafted but so much revolves around that 4th pick. - Rudolpho Rivera
Sam's Comment: Hey Gar, you didn't tell me you wanted White.
Since Garland will be gone, I like Coby White because he has it all for playing the point. If White is gone, then I'd go with Doumbouya, a great athlete, but only if he tested well for explosion, quickness, and jumping because he is a slasher like Pippen and has great shooting touch on his drives. - Alan Smith
Sam's Comment: With Wendell the next Horace. OK, Zach, you need to be Michael. Yes Arch is Pax.
I rarely fall in love with players based on their highlight videos, but doing research on and watching video on all the likely draft prospects for the Bulls outside of the inevitable top 3, one in particular stands out. It has to be DeAndre Hunter. He can literally step on the floor with this Bulls team tomorrow and make them better. He has the size, quickness, length, and shooting skill, on top of production and a championship pedigree. Garland is skilled but small and injured. White is quick but not a PG and we have SG covered. I like Culver but he is a also likely a few years away from heavy minutes and his best position is also SG. The 3rd wheel Dukie is Marvin Williams 2.0, which I will take a pass on. Hunter looks like Kwahi to me, I know he's the flavor of the day, but the big knock on him is he will be 22 to start the season so he doesn't have a high ceiling. What am I missing? - Nick Maurer
Sam's Comment: Kawhi wasn't supposed to be Kawhi, either. It's always fun to go back to the draft day scouting reports. Kawhi back then was compared to Luc Mbah a Moute, who was my favorite scouting report in his draft as he was considered Ron Artest without the crazy. Kawhi's scouting report was can't shoot, cannot beat his defender to the basket and can't finish. The end. I think Hunter goes 4 or 5.
I'm not sure either will be available when we are on the clock, but for me it comes down to White or Culver. And if I was making the pick I would pick White. I don't view this as a strictly a 'need' pick because I think White and Culver are in the same prospect tier. Culver has the mid range game and the superior defense. And he'd also be a great off the ball cutter and secondary play maker that would fit nicely with our core four. But I think White's speed and shooting are what win out for me. He would give us a starting five that can all get out and run and space the floor. He isn't the ideal distributor right now, but if you put five guys on the court that all can shoot and are willing passers you probably don't need the prototypical point guard. And when we do need to slow the game down and run the offense, I'll take the ball in Zach Lavine's hand any day of the week. - Troy Sarni
Sam's Comment: If Kawhi goes to the Clippers, the East is wide open again. Hey, who thought Toronto would win the title? Anything is possible? Let's show Vegas this time!
Doumbouya. The NBA is all about having at least 2 exceptional stars. Going with players who only fill roles or could be starters doesn't work. I think Doumbouya has the highest upside and could be an exceptional star status player. Go with Patrick Beverly at point guard. Otto Porter is a very good player for now until Doumbouya matures and we haven't even seen what he can accomplish with the Bulls over the course of a full year - Lawrence Luy
Sam's Comment: So who's the star to go with Doumbouya?
Darius Garland. I think there's a better chance than you that Darius Garland is available at #7. I don't think the Pelicans will be able to trade that pick for anything that they agree to & instead select DeAndre Hunter at #4. At #5 with Colin Sexton already drafted last year as their young point guard, I think the Cavs are more likely to select Jarret Culver. At #6 Phoenix needs a point guard but they have not watched Garland work out, nor have they done much work on him. They are much more into Coby White and I believe they select White. Leaving Darius Garland to the Bulls. - Gary Fabian
Sam's Comment: Which also would prove to Pax that prayer works.
I think it would be a good idea to take Cam Reddish. With his comparisons from high school to who he could be like, and the fact he has already shown that he is willing to pass up for a star gives him a good grounding going into this bulls team. The fact he is such a fluid shooter and a good defender will help this team out no end and if he does explode like i believe his potential will allow him too then he makes Porter expendable and he could then be moved for a more solid point guard if Dunn still falters to start the year. Also Cam was said to have excellent ball handling and passing skills and is also said to be able to guard most positions with his size and length which appears to be useful in the way teams can over switch on screens in the current play style. I believe he is probably the least risky option of the lot from 7 down with arguably most potential upside. - Dan Graver
Sam's Comment: Best Duke player in this draft five years from now?
We should go after Reddish. I definitely dont want to be kicking myself if they dont pick him up. - Miguel Vera
Sam's Comment: Would you call that failure being yellowish?
I know the Bulls don't like to approach drafts this way because the one time they did it burned them, but I don't see how they have a choice but to pick the player with the highest ceiling. Tyrus Thomas was a bust. That was 13 years ago. It's like getting dumped by a significant other in high school and then never dating again. Time to give love another shot! When the Bulls not only didn't move up in the lottery but actually fell back, they lost all hope of picking a high upside player who was also close to a sure thing. They also admitted via the Porter trade last year - and the free agency rumors are now backing up their thinking - that no big time free agents are coming this summer. They have a solid core but need (like many other teams) stars. Maybe Lavine can continue to grow into one, perhaps Markkanen, but neither are there yet or guaranteed to get there. All of that said, I think they have to go with Reddish or Hayes. Yes, there's bust potential and patience will be required. But you can make it to a middle seed lots of different ways. You can only make it to the Finals with a star. Plus, just try something different for once just to make things interesting! Don't draft an average point guard just because Kris Dunn might not be your starting point guard for the next 10 years. Plus, with Lavine's ball dominance, assuming they aren't trading him, you only want a certain type of point guard anyway. Wasting what's hopefully the last high pick for a while on a position of need as opposed to talent would be frustrating to see as a fan. - Cameron Watkins
Sam's Comment: And then forgive Tyrus, too?
If they don't trade up, Hayes and Bol make the most sense. Anyone who is a rim protector that can shoot free throws is a guy who helps your team close in the 4th. Both can do that. Having an outside shot and ability to handle makes Bol of particular value. Great frame and immediate impact as lob catcher make Hayes a great choice. If anyone is worried that these guys duplicate Carter or Markkanen, I know a lot of teams who would love to have whomever you don't want. Culver, Hunter, and Reddish all are safe picks that are replaceable long term pieces with mid level exception type pieces. Reddish upside overrated: name the last all NBA guy who was a shrinking violet behind another star on his college team. Culver tops out at Khris Middleton. Not bad but doesn't change the arc of the team. Hunter is Ariza at best. Big deal. Doumbouya would be reasonable, though not seen enough tape. Great measurables though, and he seems to be able to shoot. Could work. No reason to be safe in this draft. Need an all star or borderline, so have to pick like that. - Len Covello
Sam's Comment: And imagine the puns I could work in with Bol.
I know nothing of the college players, but I know a constant when I see one. Players that come from great teams are rarely great players themselves, almost because they don't have to be. They have so many other teammates that have to be watched and defended, that even a good player can be great because of the lack of attention. I'd prefer an international player (Doumbouya, Bitadze) mainly because they know "our" game better than American players. We need an upgrade now and I don't see any of the "name" players helping now or ever really. Benches around the league are filled with these "lottery" players. - Tom Golden
Sam's Comment: Open those borders!
I would probably take whoever the scouts think will be the best shooter available, regardless of position. The Bulls have always been behind in shooting, and I think this is one of the skills that if you have it already I want you on my team. Is Bitadze a good shooter? If so, I may take a flyer on him with size and shooting. - Jon Kueper
Sam's Comment: I'm not shooting that one down.
I chose Jaxson Hayes. White is too much like LaVine. Get a FA PG. Culver is a Hutchison clone. Hunter is like Valentine. Reddish is too risky and we don't need another 3. Avoid Euro-projects at 7. That leaves Hayes. We have no backup center, or power forward for that matter. In a couple years a front court rotation of Markkanen, Carter and Hayes could be dynamite. - Gary Gage>
Sam's Comment: Hopefully not with a burning fuse.
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