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Why the Chicago Bulls should target Mo Bamba

Mo Bamba Bulls

The Bulls are in full-on tank mode for the final 25 games after the All-Star break. They decided to bench veteran Justin Holiday, Robin Lopez and Jerian Grant down the stretch. They made this decision so David Nwaba, Cristiano Felicio and Cameron Payne could play extended minutes. The point of this move is not just to blatantly lose games, but to also see how young players respond to playing more minutes and carrying more of the load.

Currently, the Chicago Bulls sit in 8th in the draft order for the first round if the season ended today. They also hold the New Orleans Pelicans’ first round pick that they acquired in the Nikola Mirotic trade. That pick will likely be a middle-round pick because the Pelicans are in the playoff hunt.

Here’s the number one player the Bulls should target in the 2018 NBA Draft.

Mo Bamba

Mo Bamba hammers home a dunk from the sky (ESPN screenshot)

Bamba is a 7’0, 225 pound center for the Texas Longhorns. He has a whopping 7’9 wingspan, which is 0.5 inches longer than Utah Jazz Center Rudy Gobert. He is freakishly athletic and anchors the number six defense in the country for Texas. When Bamba is on the court, Texas allows an absurdly low 82.7 points per 100 possessions. This is very good indeed.

He is averaging a double-double on the year with 13.4 points, 10.9 rebounds and 3.9 blocks-per-game. He is shooting 60.8 percent from the field and has shown some semblance of a 3-point shot, shooting 28 percent on the year. He also has multiple highlights like the one below.

In Chicago, he could slide right in next to rookie power forward Lauri Markkanan. Markkanen has a fabulous offensive game and a beautiful jumper for a 7-footer, averaging 15.1 points and 7.7 rebounds while shooting 42.6 percent from the field and 35 percent from beyond the arc. His offensive ability would fit nicely with Bamba’s defensive prowess. Bamba would have the ability to focus on what he does best, which is defense and rebounding, while continuing to improve his offensive game but not having the pressure of being the number 1 or 2 option.

Hopefully the Lauri-Mo frontcourt will be tearing up the United Center next season.

Featured Image: SBnation

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