Former NBA champion Tristan Thompson joins the Chicago Bulls


Tristan Thompson. Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Chase White, Sports Editor

13 minutes was all that Tristan Thompson needed to prove himself to the city of Chicago.

While the Chicago Bulls sit at the #2 seed in the Eastern Conference, the team has been searching for a vital roster piece in order to become solid title contenders. The team brought in veteran Tristan Thompson – who has an impressive resume of 83 playoff games and one championship ring.

Thompson, who is known for this incredible rebounding ability, is now coming off of the bench to help starter Nikola Vucevic – a relief for fans and the team alike, as the Chicago defense, has struggled down low. Since this new-look roster came together last year, the Bulls have been the second-worst team when it comes to offensive rebounds and second-chance points. The new 6’9 veteran will help in changing this flaw.

However, Thompson doesn’t just help on the court. According to head coach Billy Donovan, he has been a help in mentorship and coaching.

Tristan’s voice on the bench, his voice on the court was really really impactful,” Donovan mentioned during an interview. “He was in the huddle, talking about being more physical and those kinds of things.”

While energy and physicality do not exactly translate onto a stat sheet, the players among the Bulls now feel elevated in regards to their full potential. DeMar DeRozan, an all-star who has shown tremendous success and skill for Chicago this season, weighed in on the new roster addition.

“His constant communication. His understanding of the game whenever talking about it,” DeRozan noted about Thompson’s skillset. “Even when we were in practice last night, he sees things and he’ll chime in and correct it right away. He understands the game. He has a championship. He played on great teams.”

The addition of Thompson, along with the current Bulls roster, could mean the difference between a playoff round exit or making it to the NBA Finals. Currently, the team possesses a record of 39-22. To compare, the Bulls have not had such a successful season since 2014. 

Thus, the Chicago Bulls are not only on track for a historically successful regular season, but they are potential title contenders. It will be exciting to see how the franchise’s aggressive roster change will play out for the Windy City.