Led by Chicago Bulls center Nikola Vucevic, Montenegro has ended their FIBA World Cup tournament run with a 3-2 record.
Vucevic would state, “It’s kind of our last chance as this core of guys to do something” in reference to the Chicago Bulls’ upcoming season.
Nikola Vucevic admits this could be the Bulls’ last dance with this core
“We know we can do better, and we have to do better. And we know it’s kind of our last chance as this core of guys to do something.”
— NBACentral (@TheDunkCentral) August 31, 2023
The Chicago Bulls fell short of expectations following the roster shift that saw the additions of Nikola Vucevic, Lonzo Ball, DeMar DeRozan, and the removal of Wendell Carter Jr. and Lauri Markkanen.
For the two seasons that the core has been together, all to show is a first-round elimination in the 2022 NBA playoffs. The Bulls’ front office has failed in their goal of quickly bringing winning basketball back to Chicago.
Analyzing Vucevic’s Comments
Nikola Vucevic is a prominent player on the Chicago Bulls roster; his comments should be taken seriously. It also looks like not just the fanbase but also the roster is getting eager to turn things around. Vucevic has been on the Bulls roster since the 2021 trade deadline, before the acquisition of DeMar DeRozan.
Unfortunately for Vucevic, being in an offensive that heavily features both Zach LaVine and DeRozan has diminished his role. Nikola Vucevic hopes to turn things around this season, establishing himself as a more significant piece of the offense and providing consistent play for the Bulls.
DeMar DeRozan’s Expiring Contract
DeRozan’s impending contract extension is one indicator of how the front office views the current roster. DeRozan is eligible for a 4-year extension worth a maximum of $179 million from the Bulls.
If the front office does not reach a deal before the start of the NBA season, it could indicate that AKME wants to see how the team performs before deciding to retain DeMar DeRozan.
Falling short has been the story for the Chicago Bulls. The front office brought the core of LaVine, DeRozan, and Vucevic to Chicago, but the trio has failed to deliver meaningful winning. AKME went all in this offseason by re-signing Nikola Vucevic, Coby White, and Ayo Dosunmu and signing Jevon Carter and Torrey Craig.
If the team once again fails to be successful in the Eastern Conference, the clear option is to begin a rebuild.
Photo: Ezra Acayan/Getty Images