F - CHI
Bulls Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations Arturas Karnisovas told reporters that “our objective is to get the best version of Lauri [Markkanen] next year. We agreed in conversations that this is our objective, and we’re going to try to do it.”
Markkanen struggled in his third season with the Bulls, relative to his impressive sophomore campaign where he averaged 18.7 points and nine rebounds per game. In 50 games so far this season, he’s seen his averages fall to just 14.7 points and 6.3 rebounds per game. He’s taking 3.5 fewer shots and shooting at a lower clip from the field as well, but Karnisovas doesn’t seem worried about the future prospects for the former 7th overall draft pick. “We’ll set expectations, which are pretty high,” Karnisovas said. “And it’s about improvement.” Chicago seems eager and willing to help Markkanen not only get back to his production during the 2018-19 season, but to also help him improve and become a really good player in this league. These comments by Bulls management bode well for a rejuvenated and hungry player as soon as next season.
Lauri Markkanen recorded 15 points (6-13 FG, 3-9 3PT), four rebounds, and one steal over 27 minutes in Tuesday's 108-103 win over the Cavaliers.
Markkanen has been less-than-good since his return from a hip injury. After a 15-game absence, the young power forward has now played in four straight contests and is averaging 11.8 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.0 assists, 0.8 steals, and 0.3 blocks over 24.1 minutes. He isn't fully up to his normal minute share quite yet, but he isn't showing the same spark or potential that he did in his first two seasons. If you've been holding Markkanen since draft day and throughout his injury, there's no reason to drop him now. While he was touted as primed for a breakout year before the season started by a lot of experts, he has failed to live up to that ticket and has been largely a disappointment this year.
Lauri Markkanen will play 20-22 minutes in Friday's matchup against the Pacers, per Bull's head coach Jim Boylen.
Markkanen missed 14 outings with a hip injury and made his return on Wednesday with 13 points and four rebounds over 21 minutes. Expect similar production on Friday as Markkanen's backup, Thaddeus Young, has been playing great lately and will be able to let Markkanen get some rest as makes his conservative return in a lost Bulls' season.
Lauri Markkanen scored 13 points (6-10 FG, 1-4 3PT) and grabbed four rebounds over 21 minutes in Wednesday's 115-108 loss to the Timberwolves.
Markkanen missed 15 games with a hip injury and immediately re-assumed his starting role in his first game back. He had a disappointing return, mainly due to his minute restriction. The Bulls have been decimated with injuries this year but Markkanen joined Wendell Carter Jr. and Otto Porter Jr. back on the court this week and Zach LaVine should be back within the next week. Combine that healthy lineup with Coby White's emergence, and Markkanen holds some serious fantasy upside. He was dropped during his injury by a lot of frustrated owners but can pay good returns down the stretch.
Lauri Markkanen will return to action Wednesday for the first time after being sidelined since late January with a pelvis injury.
Markkanen will be limited to 18-20 minutes and likely be slowly eased back into a full-time role. He was averaging 15.0 points, 6.5 rebounds, and 1.5 assists so far this season, the worst numbers of his career. The Bulls frontcourt features numerous injuries and minutes restriction, making it a mess for fantasy purposes.