Central Notes: Young, Love, Markkanen, Pistons

Bulls veteran forward Thaddeus Young appears to be the most viable candidate to be moved by the 2021 trade deadline on their roster, according to K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago. Young will can fit in with a variety of clubs, and given his age will not match up as a long-term fit with Chicago.

The versatile role player forward’s skillset on both sides of the ball has been a big part of Chicago’s relative competence this season. The Bulls are currently 8-12, a half-game out of a play-in tournament spot in the East.

Young, 32, is averaging 10.9 PPG, 5.3 RPG, and 4.3 APG for the Bulls in his 14th NBA season. He is in the second year of a three-year, $41MM contract he inked with Chicago in the summer of 2019. However, the $14.2MM he is owed on his 2021/22 salary is non-guaranteed until August 2021.

There’s more out of the Central Division:

  • Cavaliers power forward Kevin Love continues to recover from a right calf strain that has kept him sidelined since December 27. His rehab has progressed to the point where he is able to commence “individual basketball activities,” per a Cleveland team press release.
  • Bulls power forward Lauri Markkanen, in the final year of his rookie deal before he can enter restricted free agency, could be a great fit as a stretch four under ex-Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau and the Knicks, per Joe Cowley of The Chicago Sun-Times. Markkanen is enjoying his best scoring season yet, averaging a career-high 19.6 PPG on 51.1% shooting from the field and 39.6% shooting from three-point range (on 7.4 attempts a night).
  • The 5-16 Pistons are the worst team in the East. Detroit is an interesting patchwork of veterans and youth, and continues to try to produce consistently night in and night out, per Rod Beard of the Detroit News.
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14 thoughts on “Central Notes: Young, Love, Markkanen, Pistons

  1. "Stons" Fan

    At this point Kevin Love and Blake Griffin are stealing millions!! Sure you can argue they earned the contract. But you also must FULFILL THE CONTRACT. These guys are making millions to do literally what rec league players can do. I never go as far to compare myself with pro athletes never have. But I truly belive at almost 40 that I can do what love and griffin have been doing for the last 2 years. Basically sit out 50 games exercise and rehab my body and got out on the floor and chuck up 3s and back down smaller guys play 0 defense and move at a snails pace. I would do all that for 10,000 dollars!!! Lol!!!!! The nba should nix garaunteed contracts for player on their 3rd contract. The players association would never agree though.

    • Its hard to watch Griffin play. He ruined it for himself trying to play while really hurt a few years ago.

    • julyn82001

      Unfortunately, owners/players sign guarantee contracts at times. It’s all valid and enforceable no matter age or results on playing courts. Look for instance what Harden did in Houston. Did he has to follow a contract terms signed with Houston? He should’ve had but he decided he wanted out no matter what including a late lack of luster performance. Houston agreed to trade him. It is what it is.

      • Exactly. Look at Washington. This season Washington has to pay Westbrook, Beal and Bertans at total of $85 million. Next season the total for the three players will be $94.7 million. Don’t get me wrong, Beal is amazing and Westbrook is still good just not what he once was. The Wizards are going no where this season.

    • buttholesurfer69

      At least Love is still good when he plays even if thats rare

      Griffin…oof. Dude looks rough this year

    • Cleveland was stupid for giving Love the huge contract extension. Cleveland should have just let Love’s previous contract expire.

  2. I like LM, but, as constituted, the Knicks are not going to pursue him. Much of the noise about the Knicks being linked to stretch 4’s pre-dates the drafting of Toppin, as well as Randle’s breakout year.

  3. KnickerbockerAl

    Knicks need a PG or SF. LM has got a big future. Bulls should just resign him. LaVine is only who could fit in NY. And Bulls probably want too much for him. IMO Bulls young talent is deeper than Knicks. They need a traditional PG to make it all work. Make Coby the third guard. A pass first PG who runs team. Carter and LM is a good mix. Even if they get a rim protector. Carter can be first big off the bench. And Williams at the 3 is a good mix with LM s game. Bulls and Knicks both get much better with a traditional PG. I’m hoping Quickly can become one. He’s a smart player.

    • Agree…knick need pg.they dont need lavine too.they can sign oladipo and move rj to sf.give topin more minutes.they will be good.bulls should re-sign markkanen.sign jarret allen and lonzo next season.coby coming from bench.if they can re-sign opj at low price,that will be good to bulls.

      • stevep-4

        Markannen needs to get in the weight room, he is a 7-1 player who plays like he’s 6-1. He should be rebounding like a madman as he towers over most players, but he is too fragile and shies away from contact. He would be a 20/20 man if he put on some muscle, maybe even 30/20 on nights when his trey is clicking.

        I agree overall with your assessments, though, Allen would solve a lot of those problems and Markannen could just spend his time on help defense. He is still very green and often seems hesitant. White obviously is a good backup for Lavine, same skill set.

  4. BO don't know Ball

    I couldn’t move Young. His value is at an all time high & it would probably benefit Chicago in many ways, but he has really found his way in Chicago.

  5. Stevepas

    I’m in agreement with KnickerbockerAl the Knicks need a traditional pg. Look at the clippers last year without a pg and bucks. Philly has a pg that deferred to Embrid and went nowhere. Pg must be the leader. Remember we had lin, and burke. I think burke and burk took Utah to the playoffs. Changing gears have any of you noticed how good Malcolm Brogdon become.

  6. In regards to Markkanen, the Bulls are in a good position. Markkanen is a RFA. So the Bulls can just wait until this season is over and just match what the market for Markkanen will bear. If the price for Markkanen is too high then let him walk or a sign and trade. The Bulls were in the same position with LaVine a few years ago and signed LaVine to a very team friendly contract ($18 million per season for four seasons).

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