They’re several bad reasons why the Chicago Bulls find themselves sitting at a near .500 record. One big reason is that Chicago’s front office didn’t get the right players that can run Fred Hoiberg’s system.
Chicago had high hopes coming into the season with a new roster. They traded Derrick Rose, Justin Holliday, and Noah signed to the Knicks, Bulls GM said they’re trying to get “younger”. Bulls added Dwayne Wade and Rajon Rondo to rebuild the offense, but the Bulls level of play still looks the same. They are labeled as an inconsistent team, because on some nights they look like a great team and other nights they look horrible. The main problem now is that Nikola Mirotic is in the doghouse.
Coming into the season, Nikola Mirotic had a reputation as a great 3-point shooter who puts a nice touch on the ball. He can put the ball on the floor and can pull up for a mid-range jump shot. Also, he passes the ball well for a player his size (6'11).
The 2011 Draft pick was supposed to be a great stretch 4 and causing problems even at the small Forward position because of his height advantage. However, Mirotic is having the worse season of his career and look lost with the Bulls. Looking down the road, Mirotic doesn’t look like a part of the Bulls future.
The 25-year-old came into this season with high hopes because of his past season success. In the 2014 and 2015 seasons, he was averaging 10 + PPG, shooting, 40 + Percent and 80 percent from the free throw line. Mirotic is regressing this year… badly. He is also averaging a career low 9.3 PPG, and shooting 38%, 30% from downtown and 75% free throw line. The 6’10 PF is a good player to have on any team. But for him, it’s all about how he fits in the system, and what players are around him.
It’s time for Mirotic to walk and change his setting. When a player regresses after two good seasons, then it’s time for a change. He just doesn’t seem interested in the games anymore.
As of December 23, Mirotic is a plus 13.6 when the Bulls win and minus 17.3 when they lose. He has a big impact on the team from both sides. He’s averaging 10.1 points and 6.8 rebounds with a 56.5 true shooting percentage when the Bulls win. When they lose, his numbers drop to 7.6 points, 4.3 rebounds, and a 45.7 true shooting percentage.
These stats are telling you that Nikola is not a good fit for the team, and should be replaced by somebody else that fits the system better. When the Bulls lose, his usage rate is at 19.7, but when they win his usage rate goes down to 18.7. If Nikola is going to play for the Bulls for 4 more years, his value will plummet.
Nikola Mirotic needs to leave now and go to a team that fits his style of play before his best years are behind him.