1993 NBA Draft:

A draft-day deal sees the Chicago Bulls, dealing with the sudden retirement of Michael Jordan, trade forward Horace Grant and their first-round pick in the 1993 NBA to the 76ers for their 1993 first-round pick...

They draft center Shawn Bradley from BYU with the pick.

How does this change the tenor of the Bulls, especially when Jordan returns?
 
Bradley was a pretty decent center, better than Luc Longley by a fair bit. He was a great shot blocker, not that good of a scorer, but the Bulls had other players who could score. Without the knee injury he suffered IOTL, I could see him developing into a strong low post player.

Michael Jordan would've rode him like crazy when he came back to the team, though. Whether Bradley would've cracked under the pressure or stepped up and improved is something I can't really say. I imagine the Bulls would've been better, but how much better, I dunno.

I could see "What if the Bulls had taken Penny Hardaway?" being a popular what if topic ITTL as well. Good lord, a Hardaway/Jordan/Pippen/Rodman/Who Cares lineup would've been unimaginably good.
 
Bradley was a pretty decent center, better than Luc Longley by a fair bit. He was a great shot blocker, not that good of a scorer, but the Bulls had other players who could score. Without the knee injury he suffered IOTL, I could see him developing into a strong low post player.

Michael Jordan would've rode him like crazy when he came back to the team, though. Whether Bradley would've cracked under the pressure or stepped up and improved is something I can't really say. I imagine the Bulls would've been better, but how much better, I dunno.

I could see "What if the Bulls had taken Penny Hardaway?" being a popular what if topic ITTL as well. Good lord, a Hardaway/Jordan/Pippen/Rodman/Who Cares lineup would've been unimaginably good.
The big thing: Bradley's defense probably does become an anchor for the Bulls. They have Bill Cartwright to mentor him, and there is also the presence of Bill Wennington and Will Perdue. Perdue may move to power forward, but Bradley clearly is a very strong defensive force. But they probably don't trade for Luc Longley or Rodman.

In some ways, Bradley and Pippen end up being a 1-2 punch on the defensive side of the court. If Pippen didn't get the steal, Bradley got the block. Since Bradley was never a big scorer, he does make life easier on that front - one less headache for Phil Jackson in managing how much Kukoc, Pippen, and Jordan would want to shoot.
 
I don't think the Bulls ever get to 70 wins with Bradley instead of Rodman. Bradley's defense and blocking make them better on the inside, but they get scorched more by outside shooting teams without Rodman. Without Rodman, they might lose to the Pacers in 1998, and POSSIBLY even the Sonics in 1996 (though with butterflies and the like, maybe the Sonics don't even make the Finals).

It'd be interesting to see who gets Rodman if not the Bulls. Do the Knicks make a run at him? If they get him, they could be a challenge to Jordan those three years (though Bradley does a better job at shutting down Ewing). I feel like the Bulls would try to bring in someone better than Perdue at power forward, eventually.
 
I don't think the Bulls ever get to 70 wins with Bradley instead of Rodman. Bradley's defense and blocking make them better on the inside, but they get scorched more by outside shooting teams without Rodman. Without Rodman, they might lose to the Pacers in 1998, and POSSIBLY even the Sonics in 1996 (though with butterflies and the like, maybe the Sonics don't even make the Finals).

It'd be interesting to see who gets Rodman if not the Bulls. Do the Knicks make a run at him? If they get him, they could be a challenge to Jordan those three years (though Bradley does a better job at shutting down Ewing). I feel like the Bulls would try to bring in someone better than Perdue at power forward, eventually.
Bradley on the inside, though, makes up for a lot. They don't deal for Longley or Rodman, but they perhaps can find a free agent who's almost as good as Rodman but without the baggage. Pippen always had a demon rep on defense - so, perhaps he gives up scoring chances, and they use Kukoc for more offense. The Bulls go with a plan of Jordan and Pippen for the present, with Bradley-Kukoc as the future of the franchise.
 
Expanding on my last post...

Here's how I see the deal going down:
Chicago sends Grant and their first-round picks for 1993 and 1994 to the 76ers. They also get the right to swap picks in 1995.
The 76ers send Chicago their 1993 first-round pick.

Bulls draft Bradley in 1993. Then, with the #3 overall pick in the 1995 NBA draft, they add Kevin Garnett to fill the void at power forward.

The 76ers are said to have committed one of the biggest sports blunders with that deal - as Grant left after 1993-1994 season, and the picks they dealt gave the Bulls a respectable post-Jordan team.
 
Top