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Bulls Should Make ‘Phone Call’ to Blazers for No. 3 Pick, Says Analyst

The Portland Trail Blazers and Chicago Bulls could be ideal trade partners in the upcoming NBA Draft.

Portland Trail Blazers v Chicago Bulls Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Portland Trail Blazers hold the biggest mystery going into the 2023 NBA Draft. Nobody knows what they will do with that No. 3 pick.

They certainly wouldn’t mind trading it, thus giving Damian Lillard a running-mate to help contend for a championship, but if the offers aren’t worth it, Portland wouldn’t mind keeping it.

If Scoot Henderson is available at No. 3, the Blazers may take him as the heir apparent for the post-Lillard era, but there might be teams interested in trading for him.

Joe Cowley from the Chicago Sun-Times believes the Chicago Bulls and Blazers could do business here.

Whatever the package — whether it’s one headlined by DeMar DeRozan or by Zach LaVine — the return for the Bulls is that No. 3 overall pick, which means the likely draft rights to guard Scoot Henderson.

Because of the seriousness of Ball’s injury, the Bulls have to start thinking about a new direction at point guard. Coby White is a Band-Aid.

Karnisovas appears determined to keep at least two of his “Big Three,’’ and Vucevic likely brings the least amount back in a deal.

That means Lillard would get an All-Star in LaVine or DeRozan as a running mate, and the Bulls would get their point guard of the future and then an Anfernee Simons-type player to run with the remaining core.

The Bulls don’t have a first-round pick this year because they traded it to the Orlando Magic in a deal that netted them Nikola Vucevic, who is a free agent this offseason.

Chicago has every incentive to blow it up and start fresh, and that could mean making a trade with Portland.

If the Blazers were to get an offer for Zach LaVine or DeMar DeRozan for the No. 3 pick, it’s certainly worth some consideration.

LaVine would cost a little more because he is younger, but DeRozan may be a better fit next to Lillard. That being said, LaVine may have more longevity than DeRozan, so the Blazers could make the argument for either. Both of them would improve the Blazers and give them a better shot. Would Portland be Finals contenders with this move? Maybe not, but they will certainly be closer and can use this move to get them to the next step or transaction.