In case you missed it, the Chicago Bulls have won the coveted number 1 pick in this Summer's NBA lottery. Bulls fans everywhere are rejoicing, they're licking their chops, hoping their management will pick Derrick Rose or Michael Beasley (I'd go with Beasley, but that's just me.) Congratulations, Bulls fans.
The odds were long against the Bulls winding up with the first pick, but if the lottery was fixed, I think for financial reasons, David Stern would've fixed it in favor of the Knicks. Having the largest market in the country basically as a black hole for basketball has to be a thorn in his side.
Anyway, the point of this post is not to look forward to the Bulls number one pick, but to look back at what the Bulls have done with their lottery picks in the post-Jordan era. If you're a Bulls fan, you may want to stop reading right now.
OK, when you're done reading this list, I want you to honestly answer the question, has any team done less with more in the past decade? Seriously, the picks this team has had are an embarrassment of riches. 1999: #1 pick, Elton Brand
(Traded to the Clippers after two 20/10 seasons in his first two years)2000: #4 pick, Marcus Fizer
(Started a total of 35 games in his four seasons with the Bulls, out of the league now)2000: #7 pick, Chris Mihm
(Traded to Cleveland)2001: #2 pick, Tyson Chandler
(Traded Elton Brand for the pick, traded Chandler to New Orleans, where he has blossomed)2001: #4 pick, Eddy Curry
(Traded to the Knicks where he has ballooned)2002: #2 pick, Jay Williams
(Bad pick made worse by bad luck. Out of the league)2003: #7 pick, Kirk Hinrich
(Overpaid PG who will probably be replaced with the #1 pick this season)2004: #3 pick, Ben Gordon
(Gunner who they may overpay to keep this Summer, or they may let him walk)2004: #7 pick, Luol Deng
(The Bulls traded for Deng on draft day.)2005: No draft picks
(Traded away in Deng deal)2006: #2 pick, LaMarcus Aldridge
(Immediately traded to Portland, the Bulls wound up with Tyrus Thomas. Aldridge averaged 17.8 points this season, Thomas averaged 17.9 minutes and only 6.8 points for the Bulls)2007: #9 pick, Joakim Noah
(Noah averaged 6.6 points and 5.6 rebounds in his rookie season)
Including the number one pick in the upcoming 2008 draft, the Bulls will have had 12 top-ten picks in the past decade. Two number one picks, three number two picks. Heading into this Summer they have Hinrich under contract, Deng and Gordon are restricted free agents, both seeking huge deals, Noah has found a niche on the team, Tyrus Thomas has not. Brand, Chandler and Aldridge are playing well elsewhere. Curry and Mihm are not. Jay Williams and Marcus Fizer are out of the league.
I ask you again, has any team done less with more than the Bulls? Enjoy that first pick, Chicago fans.