Zach LaVine Rumors: Kings 'Strongly Considering' Run at Bulls' RFA Guard

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistJune 28, 2018

Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine drives during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Detroit Pistons, Friday, March 9, 2018, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Carlos Osorio/Associated Press

The Sacramento Kings are reportedly interested in making a push to sign Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine, who could receive an offer sheet as a restricted free agent starting July 1.

On Thursday, K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reported the Kings are "strongly considering a run" at the two-time NBA Slam Dunk Contest champion. The Bulls sent a qualifying offer to LaVine on Thursday, according to Vincent Goodwill of NBC Sports Chicago.

LaVine averaged 16.7 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3.0 assists while shooting just 38.3 percent from the field during his first season with the Bulls. Chicago acquired him last June as part of the blockbuster trade that sent Jimmy Butler to the Minnesota Timberwolves.

In March, the 23-year-old UCLA product was asked whether he was deserving of a max-value contract extension and said, "there are things you work for."

"Max players are top of the line. There are a lot of dudes in the NBA who haven't been top of the line because of money situations or the cap is bigger or a weird offseason," he told reporters. "You are what you're worth. Obviously, you can't say no to getting one. I see myself being an elite player in this league. I'm going to work for that every day until I get there."

It's hard to imagine any team making that type of offer after a season where he ranked 92nd out of 103 qualified point guards in ESPN's Real Plus-Minus.

That said, he was limited to 24 appearances last season after recovering from a torn ACL and could still possess some untapped potential at age 23.

LaVine averaged 18.9 points and shot 45.9 percent in his final season with the Wolves.

In Sacramento, he'd join an already crowded backcourt rotation featuring De'Aaron Fox, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Buddy Hield, Frank Mason III and Iman Shumpert.

The Bulls would have the opportunity to match any offer LaVine receives from the open market.

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