Chicago Bulls feature Josh Giddey, refreshed with fresh start – NBC Sports Chicago

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The Chicago Bulls introduced Josh Giddey during a virtual press conference on Tuesday. And while the Australian said he has yet to discuss his role with the Chicago Bulls, peg him as the starting point guard.

The Bulls targeted Giddey just as specifically as the Oklahoma City Thunder targeted Alex Caruso in the one-for-one trade finalized Friday. League sources indicated that the New York Knicks and Sacramento Kings both offered draft capital to the Bulls in packages they believed were superior to the one-for-one deal. The Athletic previously reported the Kings’ offer which featured the 13th overall pick in this week’s NBA draft.

“We haven’t talked about roles yet. I’ve met (coach) Billy (Donovan) a few times already and he’s been incredible in the conversations we’ve had. But I understand the team that is here, there are a lot of good guards,” Giddey said. “Ayo (Dosunmu), Coby (White), Dalen (Terry), they have a lot of guys who can handle the rock. I think it will allow for good competition in training camp, pushing each other and making each other better. We’ll see what happens when the season arrives.

It may just be an innocent slip of the tongue that Giddey didn’t mention either Zach LaVine or Lonzo Ball in his comments. In his defense, it’s not his job to play the role of chief executive and, after arriving from Australia on Sunday, the 21-year-old’s world is in flux as he meets his new organization.

In fact, Giddey downplayed whether or not the Bulls indicated to him that more moves would be coming after his acquisition, which could signal a youth movement and either rebuild or retool depending on extent of potential changes.

“I didn’t ask,” Giddey said. “I just focused on getting here, getting acclimated to the new environment. Regarding the direction the franchise is taking, I haven’t asked any questions. I just kind of bought into what’s going on here. I will play my part in helping our team be as good as possible from the start.

Giddey certainly looked like a point guard when asked how he envisioned his role.

“My job is just to make the game easy for everyone. Come in and make sure guys have easy looks, guys are comfortable on the floor,” he said. “When you’re a point guard and you can involve other people around you and get them involved in the game and make them feel good from the start, it opens the game up for everyone. That’s how I see myself making basketball easy for my teammates around me.

Giddey came across as relaxed, affable and grateful for his new opportunity. He praised Thunder executive vice president and general manager Sam Presti multiple times during his nearly 17-minute media session — and for reasons other than the fact that Presti said Giddey had All-Star potential. -Star.

“I had a great relationship with Sam throughout my time at Oklahoma. The only thing I really respect about him is his transparency. He is very open and honest with the players and especially with me throughout this process,” Giddey said. “Obviously, I was coming off a difficult year. My role has changed a little. I was playing a lot more off the ball and a different role than I’ve done in my career. So there was no secret, I was going to need a certain flexibility to fit into the team we had, the structure we had and the type of players we had. And he talked to me about looking at different potential roles, coming off the bench, running the second unit. And I just told him that at this point in my career, I was 21, it wasn’t something I really wanted to do. And he understood perfectly.

“We were open and honest with each other. And we worked together throughout the process. He took me to a great place. I’m very, very excited to be here in Chicago and all the first impressions have been amazing. The people have been great. And I feel very welcome here.

Giddey displayed strong personal reflection and responsibility when asked about his diminished role in the Thunder’s second-round loss to the eventual Western Conference champion Dallas Mavericks . While Giddey’s role changed over the course of the season largely thanks to the Thunder unexpectedly claiming the conference’s No. 1 seed as Shai Gilgeous-Alexander emerged as a more valuable candidate and As Chet Holmgren showed off his unique skills, the Mavericks targeted Giddey on the defensive end and left. him wide open like a shooter.

“It was hard. As a player, you want to get to the NBA first. And then when you’re in the NBA, you want to be in the big playoff games. I’ve been dreaming of this moment for so long. For it to end like that, it left a bitter taste in my mouth. It showed me that there are so many things I need to work on to be available in those moments,” Giddey said. “Filming is a big deal. But I just realized that to be at the highest level, you really have to be able to compete defensively. You have to be able to guard guys. It’s a side of the ball that I really want to be proud of and move forward and make sure that when the playoffs come, I’m ready to play on both sides of the ball.

Giddey’s whirlwind offseason will continue with his role with the Australian national team. He also said he plans to watch film of last season’s Bulls games, while praising the team’s talent.

“As far as how I viewed my season, it was different. It was scouting, playing in the dunker, being ready to catch and shoot. Like I said earlier, it wasn’t a negative look at me. It was mainly because our team had become so good and there were several players who could handle the ball and do different things. So I had to adapt. And I think I did,” Giddey said. “And while we’re in the middle of all this, it’s hard to see the light. But looking back, it probably taught me a lot of lessons that I needed for a young player in his career.

“I thank Sam for those (All-Star) comments. I speak very highly of him, a wonderful person. Compared to that, it was going to be difficult to exploit my potential in a team like that. There were so many talented guys who needed the ball in their hands, who were great with the ball in their hands. Perhaps a change of scenery would unlock more for me. Coming here, I want to be the pass-first point guard that I am.

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