The Chicago Bulls are betting on the potential of Marquette forward Justin Lewis after agreeing to a two-way contract with him following the 2022 NBA draft on Thursday, per Shams Charania of Stadium and The Athletic.
Bleacher Report Draft Expert Jonathan Wasserman's Scouting Report
Player: Justin Lewis
Pro Comparison: Semi Ojeleye
Scouting Report: There is interest in Lewis' three-level scoring for a 6'6", 235-pound forward. Teams wish he was more of a defensive stopper at that size, but in the second round, they will take the improved shooting if it's real.
Dalen Terry, PG/SG: Rookie scale contract
Justin Lewis, SF/PF: Two-way contract
DeMar DeRozan, PF: $27.3M (2024)
Nikola Vucevic, C: $25M (2023)
Lonzo Ball, PG: $20M (2025)
Alex Caruso, PG: $9.2M (2025)
Patrick Williams, SF: $8M (2024)
Coby White, PG: $6M (2023)
Tony Bradley, C: $1.9M (2023, Player Option)
Javonte Green, SG: $1.7M (2023)
Marko Simonovic, C: $1.4M (2024)
Ayo Dosunmu, SG: $1.2M (2023)
Zach LaVine, SG: UFA
Derrick Jones Jr., SF: UFA
Troy Brown, SF: RFA
Matt Thomas, SG: RFA
Tristan Thompson, C: UFA
Malcolm Hill, G: RFA
Tyler Cook, PF: RFA
Lewis was thrust into a starting role in his second season with the Golden Eagles, and he took full advantage of the opportunity. He showed improvement in virtually every area of his game to boost his net on-court rating from minus-6.0 in 2020-21 to plus-6.2 last season, per Sports Reference.
Along with his statistical jump, he also continued to add more versatility to his skill set that should allow him to become more of a combo forward for the Bulls rather than being restricted to the 4, which would have been tough at the NBA level at his size.
The 20-year-old Baltimore native is still a work in progress, which is why he didn't generate a ton of buzz leading up to the draft, but he could end up being a steal if his development continues at anywhere near the rate it did during his two college seasons.
So it's an addition with some definite upside for Chicago, even with Lewis unlikely to play a massive role right out of the gate.