The Chicago Bulls were a very active team in free agency, adding key depth pieces and retaining their own players as well. They brought in Jevon Carter and Torrey Craig to help solidify their bench and re-signed Coby White, Ayo Dosunmu, and, most importantly, big man Nikola Vucevic.
Vucevic earned himself a three-year, $60 million extension with Chicago. The veteran center played in all 82 games for the Bulls this past year and has been a double-double machine for the majority of his career. While keeping him around means the Bulls are committing to their current, likely mid-tier, core, the contract is a win for Vucevic.
According to Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report, Vucevic is one of the biggest Bulls “winners” from free agency.
“Entering free agency, Nikola Vučević’s earnings potential seemed uncertain. While he’d had a mostly productive two-plus-season stint in Chicago, it was unclear how the market would react to a 32-year-old center with fairly severe defensive limitations and a so-so outside shot.
“Yet, the Bulls seemingly felt he was enough of a flight risk to prevent his free-agency venture altogether and instead hand him a three-year, $60 million extension before the market opened. Had he hit free agency, it’s hard to imagine he would’ve done any better. It’s possible he would’ve done worse, so that’s a win in itself.
“Beyond that, though, he picked up another win with the fact that Chicago otherwise left its center rotation untouched.
“Andre Drummond picked up his player option, but he wasn’t a major threat to Vučević’s floor time this past season. In fact, the Montenegrin logged more minutes than he had at any point of his Bulls’ tenure (33.5 per game). He has no obvious reason to expect to see a reduction this time around,” Buckley wrote.
Was re-signing Vucevic the right move for the Bulls?