NBA Rumors: Chicago Bulls Take Huge Star Off The Trade Market

Following the James Harden trade, rumors began swirling around the league that the Philadelphia 76ers were possibly targeting Zach LaVine in a follow-up deal with the assets they obtained from the LA Clippers. 

But Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times says sources close to the team tell him that the Bulls aren't currently interested in trading the two-time All-Star. Word is the Bulls would like to let things play out this season before making any such drastic decisions.  

This news comes on the heels of LaVine seemingly calling out his teammates with a stark statement: 

“We have three All-Star players. We gotta make this work, from top to bottom. It’s not just the players. We gotta make this click,” said LaVine, who's in the middle of a 5-year. $215M contract.

The three past All-Stars he's referring to are himself, DeMar DeRozan and Nikola Vucevic. But if it's "not just the players", then who, exactly, might he be calling out? 

As for those 'Big 3', Vucevic is pulling down rebounds at a career-high rate of 12.4 per game, though scoring a bit under his career average, at 15.8 points, and shooting a miserable 23% from long range through five games. 

DeRozan's scoring is down, at 21.8 PPG, while his rebounding and assists are also a bit under his normal marks. 

As for LaVine, he's scoring right around his average of the last couple of years, at 24 per game, but his distributing is way down, to just 1.2 assists, from his usual 4.5-ish average. 

Artūras Karnišovas is the Bulls' executive vice president of basketball operations, while Marc Eversley is the GM. Have they done enough, in LaVine's eyes, to surround those three stars with a complementary group?

The Bulls are 2-3 heading into Friday night's action, and this current iteration of the team doesn't seem any closer to being a serious playoff contender than in recent years. 

But for now, it seems like they want to hang on to their $215M man for the time being.

Photo: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports