The Chicago Bulls finished the 2022/23 NBA season with a 40-42 record that earned them a place in the play-in round.
They lost to eventual Eastern Conference champions the Miami Heat in the play-in, but they decided to keep the core of their roster together as they enter the 2023/24 NBA season.
|2022/23 Chicago Bulls||Record: 40-42|
|Result: Lost Play-In Round vs. MIA Heat|
|To win 2023/24 NBA Championship:||+12500|
|To win 2023/24 NBA Eastern Conference:||+6000|
Keeping the mid-range shot alive almost singlehandedly, DeRozan is something of a relic in today’s NBA especially since he is not a prolific three-point shooter. That said, two of the best seasons in his career were his two with Chicago so far, and the 34-year-old wing will want to keep that up this season.
Like DeRozan, LaVine has blossomed since he joined Chicago before the 2017/18 season and both of his All-Star Game appearances have come during his tenure in the Windy City. An athletic combo guard, he and DeRozan can both light up a defense on any given night.
Jevon Carter – Milwaukee
Torrey Craig – Phoenix
Quenton Jackson – Washington
Adama Sanogo – Undrafted free agent/UConn
Patrick Beverley – Philadelphia
Derrick Jones Jr. – Dallas
The Bulls begin their season by hosting another borderline playoff team, the Oklahoma City Thunder, on Oct. 25. They face the Toronto Raptors at home on Oct. 27 before a three-game road trip with games against the Detroit Pistons, Indiana Pacers, and Dallas Mavericks.
On Nov. 4, they play an away game against the reigning NBA Champions, the Denver Nuggets.
Four nights later, they play the Phoenix Suns in Chicago before a visit to the Milwaukee Bucks on Nov. 13.
On Nov. 18 and 20, they play consecutive home games against the Miami Heat, who won the Eastern Conference last season.
The odds indicate that this season, the Chicago Bulls should battle for one of the final playoff spots in the East as they are +165 to make the playoffs and -200 to miss the playoffs.
Because they kept their roster the same, that seems a realistic goal for the Bulls who have the 10th-longest odds out of 30 teams to win the NBA Championship at +12500.
DeRozan and center Nikola Vucevic are both on the wrong side of 30 but still contributing at a high level, and 28-year-old LaVine is still jumping out of gyms and averaging over 20 points.
The young players who can step up this season are fifth-year point guard Coby White and fourth-year forward Patrick Williams.
White and Williams were both drafted in the lottery and have proven to be effective contributors in the pros.
Williams shot 41.5 percent from three-point range on 3.4 attempts per game last season while averaging 10.2 points per game. If he can score more and raise his average of four rebounds per game, he could be a quiet candidate for Most Improved Player where his odds are currently +5000.
White played off the ball for the first time in a while as he came off the bench in all but two games last season, and he is +5000 to win 6th Man of the Year. He was drafted seventh overall in 2019 because of his ability to run point, so it bears watching to see if head coach Billy Donovan uses him in his natural position or plays Alex Caruso, Quenton Jackson, and Jevon Carter at point ahead of White.