NBA Draft Rumors: Bulls Shouldn't Reach for Tyshawn Taylor in First Round

Tim DanielsFeatured ColumnistJune 28, 2012

ST LOUIS, MO - MARCH 25:  Stilman White #11 of the North Carolina Tar Heels drives against Tyshawn Taylor #10 of the Kansas Jayhawks during the 2012 NCAA Men's Basketball Midwest Regional Final at Edward Jones Dome on March 25, 2012 in St Louis, Missouri. Kansas won 80-67.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

With superstar point guard Derrick Rose rehabbing a knee injury and the contract status of backup C.J. Watson still up in the air, the Chicago Bulls could have a big void to fill.

Drafting Tyshawn Taylor in the opening round of the NBA draft wouldn't be a good fix, however.

That's exactly what the Bulls are planning to do as of right now, according to Vin Parise of the NBC Sports Network. Chicago holds the No. 29 selection of the first round, which is the team's only pick tonight, barring any potential trades.

Taylor has been projected to go in the second round throughout most of the draft process and that's really where he belongs. Taking him in the first, where he would receive a guaranteed contract, would be a reach by the Bulls.

The Kansas star took on a much bigger role during his final collegiate season and saw his scoring average increase by more than seven points per game. He was a key piece to the Jayhawks' run to the national title game.

That said, there are still a lot of flaws in his game that need to get worked out before he's ready to handle an extended role in the NBA.

More importantly, his decision-making and passing skills need to greatly improve if he's going to play point guard full time. And he doesn't have much choice because, at 6'3'', he doesn't have the size to shift to shooting guard.

Taylor averaged only five assists as Kansas' primary ball handler and those were basically offset due to his high turnover rate. That assist-to-turnover ratio needs to greatly improve before a team can feel confident in him running an offense.

Another concern is Taylor's 69 percent mark from the free-throw line. For a player that relies heavily on attacking the basket to create offense, that's a lot of points he's missing out on. Opposing teams will take advantage of that, especially during key moments.

So it's clear Taylor has a lot of work to do before he can be counted on to play meaningful minutes at the next level. That's why it's such a surprising report—basically saying the Bulls have made up their mind unless something drastic happens.

The team also needs a shooting guard and there should be several of those available late in Round 1 that will provide a lot more value. Will Barton, Doron Lamb and John Jenkins are among the two-guards being mentioned in the area of the 29th pick.

All three of those players would be better options than taking a big chance on Taylor and hoping he suddenly figures it all out.

While it's understandable the Bulls would like to target a point guard, settling for Taylor would be a mistake in the long run.