The Bulls and Bobby Portis couldn’t come to an agreement on a long-term deal before this year’s deadline for rookie extensions, though both sides envision Portis staying in Chicago past this season.
“My game won’t change. I’ll still give it all I got. This is where I want to be long-term,” said Portis (via K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune in a series of Twitter links). “I couldn’t see myself in any other jersey. Obviously, I got Bulls DNA. Me and the city have a love connection somewhere. I just enjoy playing for the Bulls.”
VP John Paxson values Portis and told reporters that the power forward’s work ethic stands out. The executive said the extension talks were extensive and the team hopes to re-sign Portis in the summer.
Although the Bulls drafted frontcourt players in each of the past two NBA drafts and gave another forward a $20MM salary as a free agent this summer, Portis is still expected to open the season as a starter for the team. Lauri Markkanen continues to recover from an elbow injury and offseason addition Jabari Parker has been shifted to the second unit, at least for the time being.