Bulls Are NOT Willing to Include Patrick Williams Alongside Nikola Vucevic in a Deal for Rudy Gobert

Earlier today, we discussed the latest rumor from Jake Fischer (Bleacher Report), which noted the Bulls’ interest in packaging Coby White with the 18th pick in the 2022 NBA draft. In short, if Bulls President Arturas Karnisovas doesn’t see a player worth taking in the late-teens on June 23, then a combination of White + No. 18 could be one of the easiest ways to add the shooting/size/rim protection this roster needs.

But that’s not their only avenue for this particular roster need.

Nikola Vucevic’s name remains heavily featured in the news cycle, and he has most often been discussed as a hypothetical piece in a trade for Rudy Gobert. In addition to his report on White, Fischer reiterated the Bulls’ interest in the Jazz big man and shared that they are, indeed, exploring Vucevic’s value. However, it appears they are not open to any trade that also includes their coveted lottery pick.

Chicago continues to explore the trade market for two-time All-Star center Nikola Vucevic, sources said. It has registered interest in Rudy Gobert, but the Bulls do not appear willing to include Patrick Williams alongside Vucevic in a trade package for Gobert, sources told B/R.

When Williams’ name first came up as a possible piece to pry Gobert away from Utah, it was met with many groans, at least in our small corner of the web. Giving up on the youngster this early would be a tough pill to swallow, which is why most rumors involving him have been quickly shut down since this season’s trade deadline.

Now, does that mean he’s completely off the table? I wouldn’t say that. But the Bulls seem to think the only way they can part with the No. 4-overall pick in 2020 is if it’s for the piece that puts them in consistent title contention.

By not discussing him in Gobert talks, I think it implies they don’t believe Gobert alone puts them in that position.

If Williams isn’t on the table in Gobert conversations, though, then who would it take? I’m not saying I want Gobert in a Bulls uniform (I’m very indifferent about the idea), but there is little question that he is the caliber of talent you must risk Williams’ long-term potential to acquire. Not doing so indicates to me that Williams remains one of the highest-regarded players in that organization, and Karnisovas isn’t likely to move him in any situation.

But, hey, who the heck knows what Karnisovas has up his sleeves. If he’s proven anything over his first couple of years in charge, it’s that he isn’t afraid to pivot and make the unexpected decision. So all I can say is bring on the draft and free agency!

Seriously, though, I’m getting antsy!

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