As the league prepares to play their final game tonight, I am busily cooking the food for the festivities; an assortment of southwestern favorites like tacos and nachos to hopefully bring good luck to the San Antonio Spurs. Though, it should be obvious I am a devoted Bulls fan.
For the Bulls, the next step to hopefully playing in another one of these NBA finals comes on this June with the League’s annual baptism of new talent… "The Draft". I have spent more time researching the prospects in the upcoming draft and the options for the Bulls and have narrowed it down to two possible war room themes.
The first theme "Chicken Noodle Soup" is a familiar one to Bulls fans. This has been the Bulls theme for several years; it is not overly interesting but keeps fans in the sits with a warm belly. They target a low risk high reward prospects and march slightly forward. In this theme I foresee the Bulls selecting the best available back-up center. They will not make a trade to move up for a shooting guard or small forward. The drafting of a shooting guard or a small forward will show a willingness to a future without Luol Deng, and if "no Luol" is their decision then much better prospects will be available via trade. If they plan to re-sign Deng, they will not waste the 20th draft pick on a player just to be his back-up. If they plan to move forward without Deng they will only do so with a trade in my second theme.
This war room theme we will call “Macho Nachos” it is always interesting and adds spice and flavor to the dun drum of the Bulls front office. In this theme I see them targeting a higher risk higher reward prospect and embrace change moving forward. I foresee the Bulls selecting either a shooting guard or small forward via a trade involving Luol Deng. As I have stated earlier I have looked through many prospects scouting videos and interviews, and have selected my top three prospects for each of this war room ideologies. It is always possible the Bulls do both if they keep their first round pick in any possible trades.
First, Here is my list for the Chicken Noodle Soup winners.
#1 Gorgui Dieng 6' 11" 230 lbs. Center University of Louisville
Draft Profile: http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Gorgui-Dieng-6219/
#2 Steven Adams 7'0" 255 lbs. Center University of Pittsburgh
Draft Profile: http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Steven-Adams-6301/
#3 Mason Plumlee 7'0" 238 lbs. Center Duke University
Draft Profile: http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Mason-Plumlee-5231/
Dieng (Jang) is the center that fits the Bulls needs the best. His defense is exceptional; His lateral movement for a guy his size is surprising, His personality is also impressive and he will be a good locker room addition as well as player. He will bring hustle, defense, shot blocking and will mesh well with the organization, fans and his team mates.
The winners in the Macho Nacho category are:
#1 Ben McLemore 6'5" 190 lbs. SG University of Kansas
Draft Profile: http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Ben-McLemore-6258/
#2 Kentavious Caldwell-Pope 6'6" 205 lbs. SG University of Georgia
#3 Jamaal Franklin 6'5" 191 lbs. SG San Diego State University
Draft Profile: http://www.draftexpress.com/profile/Jamaal-Franklin-17500/
Ben McLemore is the biggest price in the entire draft. His size and athleticism will draw comparisons to Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook, his shot mechanics have all ready drawn comparisons to those of Ray Allen. Whether he reaches those lofty expectations will remain to be seen, but pairing him with Derrick Rose will make the Bulls young duo formidable for the next 10 years. To do this the Bulls will have to trade up. A trade to get high enough to select Ben McLemore will take both Deng and the precious future pick from Charlotte. The addition of a player like McLemore is worth it. His character is good and his up bringing is similar to that of Derrick Rose. The two could develop a brotherly bond of their talents and life experiences. If the Bulls want to find a Pippen for Rose this kid McLemore is it.
Hopefully, the Bulls to take a risk on draft night and make a bold move for McLemore. As a fan I know most likely they will wait until the 20th selection and see who still remains on their draft board and select "The Best Player Available". My only advice to them is that the players on title winning teams were drafted high and expected to become stars. Which many of them have and for the Bulls to beat them and hoist future banners of their own into the rafters, they too will have to add stars. McLemore will be a All-Star and is just the type of sidekick that Derrick Rose needs.
So settle in and watch tonight's finale. As the big three position their raccoon skin hats and load their long rifles in preparation to play their roles as Daniel Boone and David Crockett. As Gregg Popovich prepares the final moves to his game plan with the certainty of Antonio Lopez De Santa Ana. Tonight the NBA will present to it's fans "The Alamo in South Beach." Hopefully, it will live up to all the hype and be worth all the blown calls which made it happen and make the league billions around the world. Enjoy.