Your USC Trojans’ most highly-regarded incoming freshman, former Sierra Canyon School guard Isaiah Collier, is expected to be the club’s only surefire lottery-level pick in the 2024 NBA draft, assuming he declares after one season.
Jonathan Wasserman of Bleacher Report takes things a step further, projecting not just where in the draft Collier will be picked, but also which team will be making said pick at that point in said draft.
Collier’s potential destination, according to Wasserman’s crystal ball, is none other than the Chicago Bulls—a team with a tumultuous history of mismanagement and lackluster performance.
The Chicago Bulls, sadly, have been among the NBA’s most inept organizations when it comes to building a winning future. They have repeatedly bungled draft selections, failed in free agent signings, and made questionable trades, leaving their fans disillusioned and their prospects dim.
In the case of Collier, landing with the Bulls might not be the dream scenario he envisions. To flourish in his professional career, he might have to seek opportunities elsewhere, considering the Bulls’ notorious track record.
Collier’s potential arrival is not without its hurdles. Lonzo Ball, who plays a pivotal role as a guard, has been sidelined for the Bulls since January 2022 due to a series of knee surgeries. His future in the NBA remains uncertain, and the Bulls have been sluggish in addressing the financial burden of his hefty $80 million contract.
Thankfully for the Bulls, Ball’s contract will expire in 2024-25, offering them some financial relief. However, Collier’s potential to fill the void left by Ball’s absence could be a double-edged sword, given the team’s disjointed roster.
While Collier’s talent is undeniable, the rest of the Bulls’ lineup comprises ill-fitting pieces that raise questions about how well he will fit into the team’s playing style and strategy.
“Regardless of what doctors say about [starting point guard Lonzo] Ball’s recovery for 2024-25, the Bulls figure to be motivated to find an upgrade at point guard,” Wasserman writes.
In summary, Isaiah Collier’s path to the 2024 NBA Draft is fraught with uncertainty, especially if he ends up with the Chicago Bulls, a team notorious for its mismanagement and struggles to secure a winning future. The road ahead for Collier is paved with challenges, and his success in the NBA may ultimately hinge on his ability to adapt to the Bulls’ unique circumstances and contribute meaningfully to the team’s improvement.
“Collier would offer an uncommon mix of physical driving and passing to Chicago’s backcourt,” Wasserman notes. “He still has something to prove as a shooter, but he did show improvement last season. In the right setting—possibility Chicago’s—he could play to his strengths early as a driving force and playmaker. Capable shot-making should be the key to Collier looking like a top-10 pick in this draft, given the likelihood that his strong frame and assist numbers will have scouts buying into his attacking and facilitating translating.”