Former Tar Heel point guard Coby White has had a very interesting NBA career so far. We won’t get into the entire timeline, but the most recent update is that the Chicago Bulls’ starting point guard, Lonzo Ball, is will miss the 2023-24 season while he still recovers from an injury that he suffered back in 2022. Since then the Bulls have tried a couple of things that eventually led to White being named the Bulls starter. That should mean that he’s the starter this season, right?
Right now the Bulls have four point guards on their roster, and according to CHGO Bulls’ podcast personality Will Gottlieb, no starting point guard has been announced.
PG update: Still no starter named— Will Gottlieb (@Will_Gottlieb) October 5, 2023
Coby has been operating only as PG, not off the ball
Team has been divvied up into 4 groups. Ayo and Jevon on the same team have been sharing PG duties. Coby is PG of his squad. Carlik and Quenton Jackson other 2 PGs.
In all likelihood the starting point guard job is going to come down to Coby White and Ayo Dosunmu, who White replaced in the starting role last season. Dosunmu struggled to get a whole lot going last season, and finished his 2022-23 campaign only averaging 2.6 assists per game. Not a perfect indicator of how good a point guard is, but by comparison White averaged over four assists per game in the last two months of the season. Not only did it seem like White was finally getting it as a facilitator, but he had some impressive games scoring the ball as well. His most impressive game was his 24-point, 11-assist game against the Dallas Mavericks back in April.
So then what gives? Why won’t the Bulls just name White the starter and make things easy for everybody? My personal answer is: I have no idea. The Bulls have done a lot of mental gymnastics to keep White from starting even when they’re desperate despite the fact that he has been playing better with Zach Lavine, Nikola Vucevic, and DeMar DeRozan. Unless something changed over the summer, Dosunmu still feels like a work in progress, and it’s hard to imagine that he will have more of an impact on the floor than White will this season. The former Tar Heel refuses to complain about the situation and is just grateful for every day that he gets to play in the NBA, but truly the Bulls are yet again doing a great job of showing that they like a little bit of messiness just to keep things spicy. It’s a bizarre way to manage a team, but they seem to love doing it anyway.
Something tells me that the point guard controversy will not get straightened out until right before the first regular season game against the Oklahoma City Thunder. If Bulls head coach Billy Donovan decides to go in another direction, we could probably start our stopwatches to see how long it is before White eventually ends up starting anyway, because it will happen. Maybe White and the Bulls just aren’t a match made in heaven after all, but right now they are all each other have.