Dinwiddie is a 6’6″ PG from the University of Colorado, and his NBA career (stats) has been underwhelming to say the least… except for his only career start, which coincidently enough was against the Bulls.
It was February 22, 2015, the first game back after the All-Star break. You may recall that in the final game before the break, the Bulls had beaten the Cavs by 15, a game in which Derrick put up 30 points and 7 assists (with only two turnovers).
(On a side note, ESPN is reporting that the Knicks have apparently had “internal discussions” about trading for Rose, but that’s a story for another article)
On that cold February night in Detroit, the 21-33 Pistons beat the 34-20 Bulls 100-91. Dinwiddie, a rookie making his first career start, thoroughly outplayed Rose. Dinwiddie played a career-high 30:42 that night, scoring 12 points (5/9 FG, 1/2 3pt) while dishing out 9 assists (vs only 2 turnovers) with 3 steals. His 6’6″ length on defense held Rose to only 8 points (2/9 FG, 0/3 3pt) and 2 assists with 6 turnovers.
Oddly enough, a month later Dinwiddie had a career-high 10 assists (with only one turnover) in his only NBA double-double as the lottery-bound Pistons (25-43) once again beat the Bulls (42-28) in Detroit.
While this could be a case of GarPax liking Dinwiddie because of the way he has performed against the Bulls, Dinwiddie was actually a decent NBA prospect before his tore his ACL during his junior year at Colorado.
Dinwiddie’s 614 NBA minutes have produced a 9.9 PER and .402 TS%, but those are superstar numbers compared to Bairstow’s 5.0 PER and .368 TS% in 167 minutes, and on paper it certainly seems as if the Bulls won this trade in a blowout. At least Dinwiddie actually played well in his only NBA start, Bairstow hasn’t played well since his senior year at New Mexico.
Dinwiddie just turned 23, so he certainly has room to improve. That being said, if he even develops into a competent back-up point guard, it will be big news. But just like Bairstow, Dinwiddie’s contract for next season isn’t guaranteed, so the Bulls can cut him for free if they choose to do so. And the Bulls have until the start of the season to decide if they want to guarantee Dinwiddie’s minimum contract, while Bairstow’s contract becomes guaranteed on July 25. So they have that going for them…