On Saturday the Bulls lost yet again. Their 111-96 loss to the Timberwolves was their sixth loss in seven games and the frustrations of that losing is starting to get to the team, specifically Zach LaVine. The Bulls wing is expected to be a foundational piece for Chicago as it tries to build a roster that can once again compete for the playoffs. Rebuilds require patience though and that can be hard on ultra-competitive players like LaVine. It can be even harder when so many of these losses haven’t even felt close.
The Bulls, winners of only five games this season, are 28th in net rating. When they win it’s by small margins and when they lose it’s often by huge margins. That can be disheartening for someone like LaVine and some of his frustration showed through after the Bulls latest loss, via the Chicago Tribune.
“We almost have to play a perfect game. We have to understand that. We have to know who we are,” LaVine said. “Nobody is going to feel sorry for us. We can’t give up. We have to compete. But you can only say so much because we keep doing the same thing over and over again. I’m doing the best I can.”
LaVine’s words sound like someone that’s tired of a team that’s constantly running in circles. The key to keeping players invested in a rebuild is showing progress. The Bulls don’t feel like they’ve taken a step forward this season as we approach the quarter pole. Words fall on deaf ears and watching them a lot of the time feels like players just running around doing their own thing as opposed to playing as a unit and together. At some point LaVine will have to decide what he’s going to do about this.
LaVine himself needs to improve. He’s struggling in November, along with the rest of the Bulls, but he can’t do everything by himself. He can either raise himself to a level where he brings the Bulls entire team up with him or he can find himself content amidst everything that’s falling apart in Chicago. Great players find ways to work through their problems. Which one will LaVine fall under?