The Chicago Bulls entered the 2014 offseason looking to make a major splash. They made a run at New York Knicks’ free agent forward Carmelo Anthony. They hosted a meeting with Anthony, wined and dined him and even let him watch point guard Derrick Rose work out as he attempts to return from multiple knee injuries.
In the end, Anthony re-signed with the Knicks and the Bulls turned their attention elsewhere, inking Los Angeles Lakers’ free big man Pau Gasol to a three-year, $22 million deal. Although he isn’t the scorer Anthony is, Gasol will certainly improve a Bulls’ offense that often struggles.
Jessica Camerato of Basketball Insiders explains how Gasol will help the Bulls’ offense.
For many years, Pau Gasol was a staple in the postseason. But with the championship days in the past, Gasol was on a Los Angeles Lakers team that fell quickly in the ultra-competitive Western Conference. When he entered free agency this offseason, though, he had his pick of contenders. Ultimately, he chose to sign with the Chicago Bulls and is quickly back in the playoff mix. Gasol will create a dynamic frontcourt duo with Joakim Noah and will enhance the Bulls’ offense with Derrick Rose back on the floor. One of the biggest benefits Gasol will experience is playing under Tom Thibodeau, one of the brightest coaches in the NBA. With a strong lineup (especially in the Eastern Conference), Gasol won’t be packing up early again this season.
Gasol averaged 17.4 points, 9.7 rebounds 3.4 assists and 1.5 blocks per game last season while shooting 48.0% from the field, 28.6% from beyond the arc and 73.6% from the free throw line.