Well my fellow Chicagoans, Kris Dunn is down.
On June 22nd, the day of the NBA draft, the Bulls finally pulled the trigger on the long expected Jimmy Butler trade– opting to swap a proven star for youth and potential.
As a result of said trade, GarPax hitched the future of their franchise to two unproven commodities with seemingly very high ceilings in Zach LaVine and Kris Dunn. This coming despite the fact that LaVine, an uber athletic wing who relies on his athleticism, had suffered a torn ACL that sidelined him for most of the 2016-17 season; and the reality that Dunn was widely (although unfairly) labeled a disappointment in his rookie campaign with whispers of the word “bust.”
But Dunn was their guy. He was coveted coming out of Providence in 2016 for his defensive ability and freakish physical specs (6’4″ with 7’0″ wingspan), and evidenced by the trade that brought him here, that infatuation had obviously not faded.
Fast forward to this past Friday and hopes had to be running high for Bulls fans and brass alike, as Dunn was in the midst of his best game wearing red to date– 11 points in 16 minutes on 5-7 shooting. That is until he tried to block Greg Monroe.
Now due to a dislocated finger, Dunn will be out 2-4 weeks to start the season, joining LaVine on the bench for the Bulls season opener against Toronto on October 19th.
Now, a dislocated finger obviously isn’t the end of the world by any stretch of the imagination, and by all accounts LaVine is stronger than he was before the injury according to those with knowledge of his rehab. However, it is disappointing that Bulls fans, now without Butler for the first time in his career, won’t be able to see the two young promising talents that convinced GarPax to trade him away.
Adding insult to injury, Lauri Markkanen, another piece acquired via the Butler trade, is still out with a back injury. Although he will hopefully be returning today against New Orleans.
For now all we can say is…all in good time, and aside from that, let’s just hope when the day does come for our future to grace the court together in red it will be the beginning of blue skies ahead for our franchise in disarray.