The Chicago Bulls, thanks to their offseason addition of Pau Gasol and the return of a healthy Derrick Rose are expected to compete for the Eastern Conference crown this season. Given that, it’s unlikely that any of their rookies will make much of an impact on the floor let alone start, right?
Well, not so fast.
Doug McDermott has been impressing those within the organization and given his unique ability to shoot at an unconscious pace, there has been speculation that McDermott could be in line for some rather valuable playing time. Some, like Sam Smith even ponder if he’ll be named a starter.
The ideal would seem to keep Butler at shooting guard, but pair him with McDermott to keep a great shooter on the floor and then have Dunleavy being preserved for the season by coming off the bench. Not that anyone is lobbying at this point. But Rose watched McDermott with the Select Team last week and liked what he saw.
If McDermott can be that shooter, that floor spacer and that threat, it’s hardly unreasonable to believe he can be the starting small forward. After all, he just played against the best players in the NBA with strong performances.
The thought here is that nobody on the roster is as good of a shooter as Doug McDermott. He’s not as well-rounded of a player (yet) as Mike Dunleavy, so why not have McDermott help spread the floor with the starting unit while having Dunleavy (a solid shooter himself) help fill out the second unit.
It may be a tad unconventional for a rookie to start on a team with championship aspirations, but Doug McDermott isn’t exactly the typical rookie either.