Chicago Bulls NBA Team Preview and Betting Picks
United Center – Chicago, IL.
Fred Hoiberg – Head Coach
2017 Record: 27-55
The Chicago Bulls have found struggles over the past few years but they are a team that is growing.
The Bulls are full of youth and the future is looking very bright for the young squad.
The issue with the Bulls over the past few years is they have no defense and this year, it really isn’t looking much brighter.
They have only made the playoffs once in the past 3 years and are looking to end that skid and find their way back to the promised land of the NBA Playoffs!
Chicago Bulls Coaching
The Head Coach of the Chicago Bulls is Fred Hoiberg. Hoiberg was hired by the Bulls organization to take over in 2015. Since taking over the team, he has steadily gone in the wrong direction, going 42-40 in 2015, 41-41 in 2016 and 27-55 in 2017.
He has missed the playoffs in 2 of the 3 seasons he has been with the Bulls and must stop the decline if he intends on retaining his job in Chicago. When he signed with the Bulls in 2015, he signed a 5-year contract worth $25 million dollars. If he finishes this year with another unsuccessful season, he may be finding his contract terminated early as the organization moves on in a different direction.
Chicago Bulls Offseason Transactions
June 21, 2018 – The Chicago Bulls used the first of their two first-round NBA Draft selections to pick Duke Center, Wendell Carter.
June 21, 2018 – The Chicago Bulls used the second of their two first-round NBA Draft selections to pick Boise State Shooting Guard Chandler Hutchison.
July 7, 2018 – The Bulls participated in a 3-way trade that sent Timofey Mozgov to the Orlando Magic in conjunction with Jerian Grant from the Chicago Bulls for Bismack Biyombo, a 2019 NBA Second Round Draft Pick and a 2020 NBA Second Round Draft Pick.
July 12, 2018 – The Bulls waived Guard Sean Kilpatrick.
July 14, 2018 – The Bulls signed free agent Jabari Parker from Milwaukee Bucks.
July 23, 2018 – The Bulls signed free agent Antonius Cleveland from the Atlanta Hawks
July 24, 2018 – The Bulls lost free agent Noah Vonleh, who signed with the New York Knicks.
July 25, 2018 – The Bulls signed undrafted free agent Rawle Alkins from the Arizona Wildcats
July 25, 2018 – The Bulls waived Julyan Stone, who later signed with Reyer Venezia.
August 14, 2018 – The Bulls signed free agent Derrick Walton from the Miami Heat.
August 29, 2018 – The Bulls lost Quincy Pondexter, who signed with the San Antonio Spurs.
September 24, 2018 – The Bulls signed undrafted free agent Kaiser Gates of the Xavier Musketeers.
September 24, 2018 – The Bulls signed free agent JaKarr Sampson of the Sacramento Kings.
Chicago Bulls Starting 5
Kris Dunn (PG) – The Bulls had all but given up and having a talented Point Guard and then all of a sudden, poof…… Kris Dunn appeared. Dunn was responsible for putting this team on his back and carrying the way in many games in November and December. The Bulls are hoping Dunn can improve on his last year form and lead the team at the PG spot.
Zach LaVine (SG) – Zach LaVine inked a 4-year, $78 million dollar offer sheet to remain in Chicago and now, it’s time to step up and earn the money. LaVine has had suspect shooting over the past few years but the Bulls believe in his future and are confident he can turn into a much stronger shooter in the future.
Jabari Parker (SF) – Parker averaged near 13 points per game and 5 rebounds per game last year and is expecting a much stronger season in 2018. He is young, just 23 years old, but the potential is endless. He dealt with some bad knee’s last year but the Bulls are hoping that is behind him and is an issue of the past.
Lauri Markkanen (PF) – Lauri Markkanen is the main scorer on the Bulls. He is their go-to guy when they needed their scoring but he fell prey to a knee injury that ended his season. He is 7 foot tall and can shoot the three pointer like he was a 6’00 Guard. Markkanen has put on a bit of weight over the offseason and that should help him score in the paint, as he won’t be so easy to push around.
Robin Lopez (C) – Lopez may not be the most experienced guy on the Bulls but he is serving as the make-shift leader. Lopez will be leaned on once again by many of the younger players as the guy they look up to as the leader of the team. This is his final year on contract and that means he could be looking to step up his game to earn that money at the end of the season.
Chicago Bulls Key Bench Players
Justin Holiday (SG) – Holiday started 72 games last year and led the team in appearances on the court. It wouldn’t be a shock to me to see him find a way back in the lineup as a starter. He doesn’t have the best numbers as far as shooting but he is dependable to be on the court and can pick up minutes when guys get injured.
Wendell Carter (C) – He is young but he is solid and should turn into a nice Center of the future. He played in the NBA Summer League and far outplayed most of the competition. He averaged nearly 15 points per game, 9 rebounds and 2 blocks per game. He won’t start this year, that job is Robin Lopez’s but he could buy himself more and more time by continuing the progress over the season.
Denzel Valentine (SG) – Valentine is a former 1st round NBA Draft Pick of the Bulls out of Michigan State. Valentine scored 10 points per game, 5 rebounds per game and 3 assists per game. He only shot 38.6% from the three-point line last year but for a 2nd-year player, those numbers overall aren’t really that bad.
2018 Predictions and Betting Outlook for Chicago Bulls
The Bulls are going to struggle this year. There are no two ways about it. They are young and really don’t have the major leader on the team with experience, to guide them through the rough patches.
On the defensive end of the team, the Bulls are going to be towards the bottom of the league. LaVine simply doesn’t play defense and Parker really isn’t much better. With so many players on the lower end of defensive capabilities, this will turn into a team that is focused on scoring and developing the young talent.
The team has a lot of young talent but the amount of success really depends on how fast they can develop and play as a unit, not as a single player trying to gain ground in the league. I don’t see the Bulls being very good this year and making the playoffs is a far-fetched thought.
Our friends over at MyBookie have set the following lines on the Chicago Bulls:
- Odds to Win NBA Championship: + 30000
- Odds to Win Eastern Conference Championship: +8000
- Odds to Win Central Division: +2500
- NBA Regular Season Wins Total: 30 games
- Rookie of the Year Odds – Wendell Carter Jr +1000
Don’t forget to check out our NBA Betting Guide to stay up to date on all of the happenings with each team in the NBA throughout the season!