“Don’t Believe He is a Number One Guy”- Former NBA Champion Unimpressed With Bulls’ Zach LaVine

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December 21, 2020 5:30 pm

Zach LaVine and his NBA career have been wrought with peril. The current Chicago Bulls player has not been able to lead the once-great franchise back to playoff prominence.

After almost 6 years in the league, there are many questions surrounding the young player’s ability to be the cornerstone of a franchise.

Dec 18, 2020; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine (8) goes up for a basket over two Oklahoma City Thunder players during the first half at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

Former NBA champion Kendrick Perkins spoke to NBA analyst Brandon Robinson about Zach LaVine. He believes that LaVine just does not have the quality to be a star player, the number one option on an NBA team.

However, he is talented enough to be the second option on a good NBA team. He said, “I love Zach LaVine but, not with the Chicago Bulls. I think he needs to be somewhere where Zach LaVine needs to be a number 2 guy.

“I don’t believe he’s a number one guy. Yeah, he can go out there and get you 30, but he’s not a guy that will get you over the hump night in and night out.”

Zach LaVine- solid second option?

Perkins’ criticism may seem harsh at first glance, but LaVine’s track record does not do much to defend him. LaVine entered the league in 2014, when he joined the Minnesota Timberwolves.

He was the 13th pick in the 2014 draft. After three years in Minnesota, he impressed a lot of people.

Eventually, the Timberwolves traded Zach LaVine and a few other pieces to the Chicago Bulls in exchange for Jimmy Butler. Since going to Chicago, LaVine’s momentum has declined slightly. He hasn’t been able to reach the heights that he did when he was with the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Dec 18, 2020; Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, USA; Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine (8) shoots as Oklahoma City Thunder guard Luguentz Dort (5) defends during the second half at Chesapeake Energy Arena. Mandatory Credit: Alonzo Adams-USA TODAY Sports

However, LaVine is still young and has the potential to be one of the best players in Chicago. Provided the front office can offer him an effective supporting cast.

Perhaps LaVine could be a solid second option on a better team. Pairing LaVine up with a star player of a different team can help him unlock his true potential.

This could be the year that LaVine can help the Chicago Bulls unlock their true potential. However, they need to make a statement fast because the Eastern Conference is tougher than it has been in recent years.

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Aaditya Krishnamurthy

Aaditya Krishnamurthy is an NBA & NFL journalist for EssentiallySports, before which he worked at BusinessWorld magazine. He has been a fan of Basketball for over 10 years now, since Shaquille O’Neal was a Phoenix Suns player. During his time at Symbiosis School for Liberal Arts, he started a sports magazine for the college called the Overtime Tribune and hosted the Overtime Tribune Podcast until he graduated. He still makes sporadic appearances on the show. During his undergraduate degree in Liberal Arts with a focus on International Relations, he wrote a thesis titled 'The Impact of Domestic and International Politics on Sports, Events, Organizations and Franchises'. When he isn’t writing about basketball or football, he is furthering his NBA MyCareer, attempting to surpass Bill Russell for rings in the game. He staunchly believes that Derrick Rose would be a Top-3 player today had he not gotten injured.

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