Zach LaVine and Jabari Parker Photo from NBA.com
The Chicago Bulls have completed their final preseason game and a lot of lineup changes have occurred throughout this
period. Expected starter Jabari Parker has been sent to the bench and the impressive Bobby Portis is now set to start for their
first game of the regular season.
With injuries from Denzel Valentine and Lauri Markkanen, the Bulls starting lineup has yet to be completed. The young
players now have a chance to prove they deserve more minutes with two major players being out with injury.
With that being said, let’s see how some of the players rated throughout the preseason.
Zach LaVine Image by Kevin C. Cox
Zach Lavine: A
Lavine’s hardcore summer training with his father seems to have paid off. Lavine averaged
19.3 points per game and shot 52 percent from the field in under 30 minutes! He also got
his explosion back, showing off exciting dunks for the crowd and almost every time he
scored, he had the biggest smile on his face knowing that he was back.
Not only was he impressive on offense but he showed the will to defend on the ball. His off-
ball defense was still concerning but nonetheless there’s improvement! Lavine has finally
shown signs of all-star level talent.
Bobby Portis: A
Bobby Portis was ready to contend for the sixth man of the year award this season. He even
has all the tools to win that award and he knows it. But with so much talent in a bench
player, it’s hard to hide him in the second unit.
The Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg decided to pull the trigger and start Bobby Portis for the
final two preseason games ahead of the disappointing Jabari Parker. With Parker in the
lineup, the offense looked sluggish, and the defense looked lazy. Bobby quickly fixed both
these problems as he helped energize the starters to a preseason win against the Pacers and
a competitive close game against the Nuggets. With this newfound success, Fred looks to
keep Bobby in the starting lineup for the future.
Jabari Parker: D-
I really wanted to give Jabari a F, I really did. But, he had a sudden outburst of success in
their final preseason game. For a player getting paid $20 million to play basketball, he
looked everything but a 20 million dollar player.
Jabari never really moved the ball on the offensive end. For a system built on passing and
playmaking, Jabari failed miserably. Repeatedly, every game Jabari was chucking up
horrible shots and making frustrating isolation plays. Every game felt like a nightmare.
I don’t even want to talk about his defense. To think that 4 years ago, Jabari Parker and
Andrew Wiggins were once posed to be the next NBA greats…Oh how wrong everybody
was. Now, Bulls fans can only hope that the benching will give him motivation to work