Patrick Williams

Drafting Patrick Williams was the Bulls’ latest franchise-altering mistake — they must move on ASAP

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With all the Patrick Williams trade rumors in 2023 and all the buzz surrounding the Chicago Bulls, it’s hard to wonder why any team would be interested in giving up a lot for the former lottery pick. Even despite his youth and seemingly high potential, he’s done nothing to show he’s worthy of a valuable trade package.

A Chicago Bulls rebuild seems imminent right now. And while most people are focused on Zach LaVine or Alex Caruso trade ideas, Williams is one of the main guys to blame for the team being in this position. Or well, Arturas Karnisovas and that new regime.

The Bulls haven’t struck gold in the NBA Draft since 2011 when they took Jimmy Butler with the 30th pick, and he’s not even with the team anymore. Ever since, guys like Paul Zipser, Cameron Bairstow, Denzel Valentine, and Marko Simonovic have made the cut.

On the flip side, the Bulls have lost guys like Bobby Portis, Wendell Carter Jr. and Lauri Markkanen just to see them thrive somewhere else, so it’s obvious that their player development staff isn’t doing a good job either. But back to Williams, the team should look to move on from him right now.

Another Failed Pick

The Chicago Bulls took Patrick Williams with the fourth-overall pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. He drew comparisons to Kawhi Leonard and was projected to become an elite defender at the next level, and while he’s shown flashes of that solid wing defense, injuries, lack of offensive development and aggressiveness, and an overall bad team have prevented him from reaching his potential.


It’s easy to look back and realize just how bad a pick this was, but it was questionable even back then. He went ahead of Onyeka Okongwu, Devin Vassell, Tyrese Haliburton, Saddiq Bey, Tyrese Maxey, Immanuel Quickley, Desmond Bane, and Xavier Tillman.

Williams averages 9.5 points, 4.2 rebounds, and 1.3 assists per game on 46% from the floor for his career, and all those numbers are down this season, even though he was supposed to be extra motivated because he’s in a contract year. That’s why, when you look out for Bulls trade news online, you won’t see many Patrick Williams trade rumors in 2023 that are actually appealing.

Bulls Are Stuck With Him

Williams was reportedly looking to land a lucrative deal in free agency, but that doesn’t seem to be the case right now. He could be looking at restricted free agency, meaning the Bulls would be obliged to overpay for his services if another team is crazy and desperate enough to make a lucrative offer for him, or just let him walk away and waste another top-ten draft pick.

This Bulls regime doesn’t like to admit defeat or their mistakes, so they’re likely to double down on him and sign him to an overpaid contract just for his so-called potential. Then again, he’s shown absolutely no signs of improvement as a scorer, and it has come to a point where he’s not even looking to shoot during key stretches.

Of course, there’s always a chance that Williams winds up being another Lauri Markkanen and he takes a major leap forward somewhere else. Even so, the Bulls would be better off just taking that risk and letting him flourish and fulfil his true potential — assuming he actually has one — with another team.


Truth be told, the Bulls need to just cut the cord and move on from every single one of their players. They need a clean slate, a fresh start, and a new front office willing to take risks and actually able to scout and develop talented players.

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