Amid a disappointing start to their season, the Chicago Bulls could be considering a trade involving Zach LaVine. The team and the player have reportedly shown increased willingness to explore trade options, as indicated by The Athletic's Shams Charania and Darnell Mayberry. LaVine, a two-time All-Star, is currently experiencing a down year, shooting 40.9 percent from the field and 30.9 percent from three-point range, averaging 21.9 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 3.0 assists per game.
Despite his current struggles, it is expected that LaVine will eventually return to his career averages of 46.3 percent shooting from the field and 38.2 percent from beyond the arc. At 28 years old, he is in his prime and still possesses the ability to have standout performances, such as his 51-point game against the Detroit Pistons earlier in the season.
Speculation regarding LaVine's future with the Bulls has been circulating for some time, with previous reports suggesting that the team would be seeking a good young player, multiple first-round picks, and salary filler in return for LaVine. Potential suitors for LaVine's services include the Philadelphia 76ers, Los Angeles Lakers, Indiana Pacers, Toronto Raptors, Miami Heat, and Golden State Warriors.
The 76ers, led by president of basketball operations Daryl Morey, have the assets to acquire a star player like LaVine. While LaVine may not be a perfect fit alongside Joel Embiid and Tyrese Maxey, the Sixers prioritize acquiring talent and worry about fit later. A trade involving Tobias Harris, whose $39.2 million salary matches LaVine's $40.0 million, and two first-round picks could be an appealing option for the Bulls.
The Lakers, in need of supporting players for LeBron James, could also make a move for LaVine. The Lakers' struggling offense would greatly benefit from LaVine's scoring prowess, and his defensive weaknesses could be mitigated with the presence of Anthony Davis. A potential trade could involve D'Angelo Russell, Rui Hachimura, Austin Reaves, and a future first-round pick from the Lakers.
The Pacers, who currently boast the league's top offense, could further strengthen their roster by adding LaVine. Playing alongside a point guard like Tyrese Haliburton could unlock another level of performance for LaVine. In order to acquire LaVine, the Pacers could offer Bruce Brown, Buddy Hield, and two first-round picks.
The Raptors, despite their strong defense, struggle offensively and could benefit from LaVine's scoring abilities. This trade would not necessarily align with the Bulls' rebuilding plans, but it might enhance chemistry within the team. A straight-up trade involving Pascal Siakam and assurances of a long-term commitment from Siakam could be a viable option.
The Heat, in need of offensive help alongside Jimmy Butler, have a trade package previously designed for Damian Lillard that could be tailored for LaVine. With their strong team culture, the Heat could provide a suitable environment for LaVine to excel. Tyler Herro and Duncan Robinson could be included in a potential trade, along with future draft picks.
The Warriors, who have struggled to find secondary scoring options behind Stephen Curry, could pursue a trade for LaVine. Klay Thompson, who is in the final year of his contract and reportedly distant from an extension agreement, could be part of a package deal. The Warriors could also include a future first-round pick.
As the season progresses, it remains to be seen which team will ultimately acquire LaVine. However, it is clear that the Bulls are open to exploring potential trade options, and there are several teams willing to make a strong offer for his services.