Bulls: Guarding from guards

Here's hoping Gar Forman has the (basket)balls to make a bold trade on Draft Night.

The NBA Draft is an exciting time for basketball fans and also a saving grace from an NBA hangover. Sorry baseball fans, but the crosstown rivalry doesn't really do it for me. 

So while I wait for next Thursday's draft, I will spend my time watching the Confederation's Cup and thinking big thoughts about how the Milwaukee Bucks should handle their draft. But since this is a Chicago-style blog, I am also going to give some thought to how the Bulls should handle their draft. 

First of all, Chicago is the envy of every Milwaukee fan, and really every NBA fan, as they have two great draft positions in the first round. With the #16 and #26 pick, they can't go wrong ... or can they?

This will be the draft that answers the question as to whether or not John Paxson is still running the show behind the scenes. If the Bulls draft Gerald Henderon, Paxson is still making the calls, it they do not, then it might be safe to say Gar Forman is in control. 

And that's not to knock Henderson, but if I wanted a player like Henderson I would just take Kirk Hinrich ... oh wait, they already have him. So another small combo guard is the last thing the Bulls need. 

There has been a lot of talk about Eric Maynor and Jeff Teague lately, but I don't think either of those fit the Bulls needs. With the #16 pick, they should bolster their non-existent frontcourt, and then with #26 they need to take a straight-up scorer. 

The problem for the Bulls is there is not a lot of depth at the forward and center positions. They could take a chance on Chase Buddinger, but he is pretty much Tyrus Thomas version 2. He has plenty of developing to do, but he is a great athlete, much like Joe Alexander for the Bucks last year. 

DeJuan Blair should be off the board by then, which is good for the Bulls. I'm still unsure if Blair will be able to do anything more than rip down offensive boards. So this leaves the Bulls with two options: Earl Clark and BJ Mullens.

Clark is a good shooter, and at 6'10" he can be a dual threat. But he doesn't have the tenacious post game the Bulls desperately need. Mullens could be a force in the paint, but he is only a freshman, which makes him a big question mark. 

If I were the Bulls, I would shock some people and takes USC's Taj Gibson at #16. He is a physical, aggressive presence and seems like the most NBA ready out of the players I just mentioned. It's a little high to take him at that position, but he would be worth it.

Notice I didn't say Tyler Hansbrough and for the sanity of Bulls fans, I hope they don't consider him.

Now for the second pick, the Bulls need to draft offense. With the exception of Ben Gordon and Derek Rose, the Bulls don't have much scoring power. I like John Salmons, but he isn't the explosive scorer to compliment Gordon and Rose. 

It's a no brainer that at #26, the Bulls need to select Wayne Ellington if he is still available. Ellington is known for his sweet stroke, drawing comparisons to Ray Allen. And though he is 6'5", he plays more like 6'7" with an impressive wingspan. 

I think a Gibson/Ellington draft would be a nice kick for the Bulls, but here is my best suggestion to my Chicago rivals. 


I have little doubt that if the Bulls traded their two first-round picks, they could convince Toronto to trade Chris Bosh. The Raptors know he won't be back in 2010, so they might as well get something for him. 

If your the Bulls, you make that trade and sign Bosh to an extension. The pick-and-roll possibilities with Bosh/Rose would make defenses tremble. It's time for Forman to be bold and make a deal happen next Thursday.