Bulls acquire McDermott via draft night trade

For the seventh time in the last 12 years, the Chicago Bulls pulled off a trade on the night of the NBA Draft. 

This time around, it is Doug McDermott, college basketball’s consensus national player of the year this past season, who will make his way to the Bulls. 

Chicago receives McDermott, along with Anthony Randolph, a 6-11, 225-pound forward with six years of NBA experience, in exchange for its two first round selections—Jusuf Nurkic and Gary Harris, taken 16th and 19th, respectively—and the lesser of the Bulls’ two 2015 second round picks (Chicago’s and Portland’s). 

"It was an unbelievable feeling,” said McDermott of learning he had been acquired by the Bulls. “I knew the interest was there. I saw them at a lot of practices and games. It was great to land in Chicago. Such a great franchise. Great city, great fans. I couldn’t ask for a better spot under coach [Tom] Thibodeau and with all the great players on their team.” 

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McDermott, a 6-8, 218-pound small forward, was initially selected 11th overall by the Denver Nuggets. He played four seasons at Creighton and led the nation in scoring with 26.7 points per game as a senior. 

Randolph has posted career averages of 7.1 points and 4.3 rebounds in 252 games played. Originally drafted by Golden State with the 14th pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, Randolph has also spent time with Minnesota and New York, in addition to Denver. 

The Bulls closed out the night by selecting Cameron Bairstow, a power forward from New Mexico, with the 49th pick. 

As for his role and what he envisions he can bring to the table for the Bulls, McDermott first mentioned what he’s best known for doing—scoring from the perimeter. 

“I think I can provide some outside shooting right from the get go,” McDermott said. “I’ll be able to come off screens and play off their superstars, [Derrick] Rose, Joakim Noah, Jimmy Butler and the whole crew. I feel I will fit in right away and I’ll play the role to the best of my ability and try to help the team win.” 

General Manager Gar Forman called McDermott one of the premier shooters in the country, but likes some of the other things he's able to do as well. 

“Our feeling is that he’s much more than a shooter,” explained Forman. “He’s got a lot of game. We’ve seen him play and we’ve studied him for years. 

“He’s a guy that is crafty with the ball, can create his own shot and run into the post some,” Forman added. “He’s good around the basket and has a quick release whether it’s from the perimeter or inside. We feel he’s a guy that will fit with the pieces we have.” 

Thibodeau believes the picks address some of the Bulls’ needs, adding to the depth of the team. He also agreed with Forman’s assessment that McDermott brings more to the table than shooting. 

“I think if you view him as strictly a shooter, you’re not casting the proper light on him,” Thibodeau stated. “He’s a lot more than that. We think he’s a complete player. We think he’s capable of playing very good defense.” 

Thibodeau spent some time around McDermott last summer as both were associated with USA Basketball and he came away impressed. 

“He more than held his own in that setting,” said Thibodeau. “Every night that he went out there, his opponent knew exactly what he was trying to get to and he still found ways to get his shots and help his team win. That’s probably the most important thing, his ability to help his team win.”

Audio—General Manager Gar Forman and Head Coach Tom Thibodeau talk about landing Doug McDermott and Cameron Bairstow (06.26.2014):

Audio—Doug McDermott on joining the Bulls (06.26.2014):