It’s that time of year again. The 2023 Bulls offseason has arrived! Between last month’s draft, free agency, and the NBA’s Summer League, enough is happening to make you think we’re already in the middle of a season.
Unfortunately, that isn’t quite the case. So with over three months to go until the start of the 2023-2024 season, let’s see what the Chicago Bulls are up to these days!
2023 Bulls Offseason News
How Was The Draft?
This first update for the 2023 Bulls offseason involves the NBA Draft and a surprising move made by our franchise. Entering the Draft, the Bulls had zero picks to their name as a result of the trade to acquire Nikola Vučević and a punishment for how they pursued Lonzo Ball in free agency.
With no pick available, we didn’t expect much from the Bulls on draft night, but Artūras Karnišovas and his staff had other plans.
In a deal made with the Washington Wizards, the Bulls acquired the 35th pick in this year’s draft for two future second round picks. With pick 35, one of the first splashes of the 2023 Bulls offseason was made and the team selected Julian Phillips, a small forward from Tennessee.
Phillips is a large forward, standing 6’8” with an even longer 6’ 11.5” wingspan. He had the highest vertical out of all players in this rookie class, and in his lone season with Tennessee last year he earned SEC All-Freshman honors and averaged 8.3 ppg, 4.7 rpg, and 1.4 apg. The Bulls will look to utilize the combination of his length and athleticism on defense while hoping to develop more consistent shooting to add to his offensive game.
Contract Signings Old & New
Drafting Phillips isn’t the only recent move for the 2023 Bulls offseason. Up next we have some signings to talk about for both some new and some familiar faces.
Starting with the familiar guys, the first signing the Bulls made involved a contract extension with center Nikola Vučević. The deal was reported for three years and $60 million. While he’s played pretty consistently in both seasons with us, many fans like to knock Vuc and are already questioning this deal and what it means for the team’s future plans. Despite the noise, Vuc is one of the team’s most reliable players as he found himself being only one of two to play all 82 games last season along with Patrick Williams.
The next extension was a pleasant surprise to see, with a three-year, $33 million deal going down at the end of last month to extend point guard Coby White. At 23 years old, White has shown plenty of improvement as a defender and floor general from where he was when the Bulls drafted him years ago. Despite last season being a statistical down-year for the young Bull, he’s still a three-point threat for a team that needs some support in that area, and with Lonzo Ball set to be out another season, he’s a guard that’s familiar and comfortable with the Bulls organization.
Andre Drummond also exercised his $3.36 million option to stay with the team and refused to give up his number to one new addition who requested #3 for $500.
Free agent F Torrey Craig has agreed on a two-year contract with the Chicago Bulls, sources tell ESPN. Deal includes a player option. Craig averaged 7.4 points and 5.4 rebounds in 24 minutes for Suns last season.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) July 3, 2023
The New Guys
That newcomer just so happened to be Torrey Craig from the Phoenix Suns, and he’s the latest 2023 Bulls offseason free-agency addition that we’ve seen. On a new two-year contract with a second year player option, Craig adds some frontcourt depth to the Bulls as a likely backup behind Patrick Williams. He’s crafty on defense and can light up opponents from behind the arc. A skill that was most recently on display in the Suns’ playoff series against the Clippers where Craig made 10 out of 18 of the team’s three-pointers in the first four games. Our days as being the bottom team in the league for average 3-pointers attempted may be coming to an end.
The final new addition thus far for the Bulls this summer saw Jevon Carter from the Milwaukee Bucks agree to a three-year, $20 million contract. Just like Coby, Carter figures to be a replacement piece for the lack of Ball, and he’ll likely compete with Coby and Ayo Dosunmu for the starting job. Odds are high that he’ll serve as an upgrade to Patrick Beverley, and he checks some much needed boxes like being able to shoot the three-ball and locking things down on defense.
The Bulls Upcoming Schedule
Outside of the roster moves, up next for the 2023 Bulls offseason is the NBA Summer League!
The first game on the schedule takes place today against the Toronto Raptors at 5:30 PM. Over the next week, they’ll face the Grizzlies, Kings, and Cavaliers with the hopes that they can advance to the semifinal stage. Good luck young Bulls!
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