The Chicago Bulls have not made the playoffs in several years.
They are desperate to get back to the postseason for themselves, but for another reason.
That reason is to retain Zach LaVine for the long-term.
Retaining him for the future and making the playoffs are their priorities.
That is why this offseason was important for the franchise.
Free agency has been a busy time for them.
They did not have their first-round pick in the draft due to the trade for Nikola Vucevic.
With their signings thus far, they have a legitimate core for next season.
— Overtime (@overtime) August 3, 2021
The Bulls look like a playoff team on paper.
This is what their starting lineup could look like.
Point Guard: Lonzo Ball
One of the newest members of the Bulls is Lonzo Ball.
New Orleans Pelicans guard Lonzo Ball is landing on a four-year, $85 million contract with Chicago Bulls in a sign-and-trade agreement, his agent and @KlutchSports CEO Rich Paul tells ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) August 2, 2021
Ball has had a weird start to his career.
He was supposed to be the Los Angeles Lakers point guard of the future.
However, he was used for the Anthony Davis trade.
Now, he is going to his third team in five seasons.
Ball is going to be a major upgrade at the point guard spot for the Bulls.
His playmaking is at an elite level, while he is working on his shooting.
He just averaged a career high in points per game at 14.6.
The shooting has always been labeled as his weak spot of his game.
However, he has worked on it a lot.
Ball shot 37.8 percent from three.
This signing for the Bulls is a major upgrade.
Shooting Guard: Zach LaVine
The star of the team is LaVine.
He made his first All-Star team this past season, but he has been a great scorer in this league for the past few seasons.
LaVine averaged 27.4 points per game this year.
He can easily use that momentum for next season.
The Bulls might be a little bit nervous for next season, as this is LaVine’s last year under contract.
However, the new additions can help with him staying after next season.
Small Forward: DeMar DeRozan
Another new acquisition for the Bulls was DeMar DeRozan.
DEMAR TO THE BULLS 😱
— ESPN (@espn) August 3, 2021
DeRozan is a four-time All-Star who is still contributing at a very high level.
This past season saw a career high in assists at 6.9 per game for DeRozan.
He has also played in high-leverage playoff games, which is helpful for a team that is lacking in experience.
This signing was the biggest by far for the Bulls.
They now have three All-Star players on this team.
DeRozan can be a big piece for the Bulls to head back to the playoffs.
Power Forward: Patrick Williams
Last season was Patrick Williams‘ rookie year and it was a good one.
He was looked at as a project of sort coming out of last year’s draft.
The Bulls selected him with the No. 4 overall pick.
Instead of having major struggles, he became a very good defender right away.
His athleticism is also off the charts.
He is going to be the energy guy for this new Bulls team, which is his best fit for now.
Center: Nikola Vucevic
The Bulls acquired Nikola Vucevic at the trade deadline this past season to try and make a push for the playoffs.
Unfortunately, the Bulls failed to make the postseason.
Vucevic is trying to replicate another All-Star caliber season.
He has been an underrated player in this league for quite some time now.
Next season can see him be a part of a miniature big three with the Bulls.