The Chicago Bulls limped into the All-Star break on a six-game losing streak. The Bulls failed to make any serious upgrades at the Trade Deadline but signed free-agent Patrick Beverley for the remainder of the season, and this move could result in some value in the NBA Futures markets.
The Chicago Bulls are nearing a deal to sign free agent guard Patrick Beverley for the rest of the season, sources tell ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) February 20, 2023
Who Is Patrick Beverley?
Patrick Beverley is a Chicago native and was drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers with the 42nd pick in the 2009 NBA Draft. Beverley didn’t get his chance at an NBA check until 2012 when the Houston Rockets signed Beverly to a contract–he spent five seasons with Houston and developed a reputation for his uber-aggressive style of defense and trash talk.
Beverley is the type of player you hate to play against but love as a teammate. He dives after balls and makes life difficult for opposing guards. Beverley knocks down the occasional triple, grabs a few boards, and is a willing facilitator, but Chicago needs Beverley for defense, and the veteran guard delivers.
What Beverley Can Do for Chicago Bulls
The Bulls are 11th in the Eastern Conference and have lost six straight. Chicago has looked lethargic before the break–maybe Zach LaVine and Alex Caruso allegedly on the trading block had something to do with the lethargy. Still, this Bulls team has underachieved all season, and Beverley isn’t going to put up with this type of nonsense.
Beverly stabilizes an injury-riddled backcourt and is especially thin at the PG position. He’ll be able to play 25+ minutes and hustle and talk smack to opponents and teammates alike. Maybe the Chicago native can light a fire under sulking guards DeMar DeRozan and LaVine, and if he can, this Bulls team is talented enough to pull off an upset or two come playoff time.
Can the Bulls win Over 36.5 games?
Yes, the Bulls can win Over 36.5 games (-110 at DraftKings) this season.
Back on January 8, I shared a Chicago Bulls season prediction where I thought they would win Over 37.5 games. I still believe that Chicago can exceed the oddsmakers’ win total, but they’ve struggled against teams they should beat. Chicago is .500 against the Eastern Conference this season and 5-7 against their Central Division foes.
The Bulls are 26-33 with a dozen games remaining against the East and four winnable games against the Central. If the Bulls win their remaining games with the Indiana Pacers and Detroit Pistons, they need to win just seven of their remaining 19 games for an 11-12 finish and exceed the oddsmakers’ total.
Can the Bulls Reach the NBA Playoffs?
Yes, the Bulls can reach the NBA playoffs (+425 at DraftKings).
The Bulls are currently three games back of 8th seed Atlanta, and with a little bit of luck, Chicago can avoid the Play-In game and automatically qualify as one of the eight seeds. Atlanta is 4-6 over their past 10 and seems to have internal issues and, as a result, could slip in the standings.
Chicago has a better chance of reaching the play-in round–they are 2.5 games behind the 9th-seed Washington Wizards and two games behind the 10th-seed Toronto Raptors. The Bulls have a Sunday matchup at home against Washington, then two nights later travel for back-to-back games with Toronto and Detroit. The Bulls hold their destiny in their own hands, and they should deliver, and those victories will propel Chicago into the playoffs.
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