We’re at that point in the offseason where media outlets begin to release their player rankings. Some will focus on where players sit within their position, while others take a broader scope. The Chicago Bulls front office likely still harbors hope that their team can be a contender in the upcoming season.
However, a spot in the playoffs, without needing to navigate the play-in tournament, is likely a more realistic target. Still, in order to navigate the ever-improving Eastern Conference, you need some high-level contributors. Fortunately, it would appear that the Bulls have multiple top-100 players within their roster, according to CBS Sports’ latest top-100 ranking.
When scrolling through the list, the first Bulls player you come across is Alex Caruso, who CBS ranked as the 72nd-best player in the NBA. Here’s what they had to say about the all-action guard:
“The Chicago Bulls had four players earn eight figures last season. One of them, Lonzo Ball, didn’t play. The other three, DeMar DeRozan, Zach LaVine and Nikola Vucevic, are notoriously negative defenders. So how did Chicago rank in the top five defensively a season ago? They employed Alex Caruso, the NBA’s best per-minute perimeter defender. The word “perimeter” is doing a lot of work in that sentence, because as far as Billy Donovan is concerned, it basically means “anyone not named Nikola Jokic or Joel Embiid.” The Bulls have used Caruso on Stephen Curry, Giannis Antetokounmpo and everybody in between. He is an elite man-defender, helper, floor navigator and communicator.”
Caruso has become a fan-favorite since joining Chicago in 2021. In his two seasons with the franchise, the sixth-year guard is averaging 6.3 points, 3.2 rebounds, and 3.3 assists, shooting 35% from 3-point range. However, Caruso’s commitment and grit on the defensive end truly show his value.
With the veteran disruptor coming off the bench, the Bulls should feel confident in their second unit’s ability to gain or maintain the flow of a game.