The Chicago Bulls had a bit of a resurgence last season, with their most successful campaign in seven years. With training camp set to get underway and the regular season tipping off in less than a month, the Bulls have their work cut out for them, with several Eastern Conference teams making bold moves to shore up their respective rosters. With Chicago not having starting guard Lonzo Ball for the start of the season due to knee surgery, can the team's recent additions of veterans Goran Dragic and Andre Drummond help soften the blow?
More veteran presence
When healthy, Ball is one of the most dynamic two-way players in the league. The 24-year-old was in the midst of a solid season before suffering a torn meniscus in his right knee in January, which ultimately led to him missing the final stretch of games of the regular season. Chicago's offense sputtered in his absence, and their defense took a step back.
With Ball set to miss at least the first few weeks of the season, Dragic is expected to step in and try to fill Ball's size 15s. The 36-year-old Dragic is a former All-Star who has averaged over 20 points per game twice in his career. He's also a capable playmaker, averaging close to five assists per game in his 14-year career.
Most importantly, Dragic's three-point proficiency will help spread the floor for DeMar DeRozan and Zach LaVine. Last season, the Bulls shot the least number of threes per game at 28.8. Dragic will help boost that figure as he made over 36% of his three-pointers while shooting more than three a game.
The Bulls already have All-Star caliber talent at the center position in Nikola Vucevic. As great as a scorer and rebounder as Vucevic has been in his career, he has never been a solid interior defender. In fact, he has never averaged more than 1.1 blocks per game in his 11-year career. Drummond, on the other hand, boasts of more solid defensive numbers.
The 29-year-old Drummond is a two-time All-Star and a former All-NBAer. He's also one of the best rebounders in the league, averaging over 13 rebounds per game in his career. In addition, he has averaged close to two blocks per game throughout his career. His size and athleticism will be a welcomed sight for a Bulls team that sometimes barely intimated those who dared venture into the paint.
The question is how well these two veterans will fit in with their new team. Both Dragic and Drummond are clearly not the same players they once were. Only time will tell if they can help address the Bulls' needs this season.