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While locked out of baseball by MLB owners, Chicago White Sox star Tim Anderson tweeted at the Bulls on Monday morning to remind them he’s available.
The Bulls were down to eight players after Alize Johnson became the 10th player in the last two weeks to enter the COVID-19 health and safety protocols — which caused the NBA to postpone the team’s next two games, including Tuesday’s matchup against the Detroit Pistons at the United Center.
Before the postponement, Anderson tweeted: “you know we locked out right.. holla at me gang! #imready”
As most Sox fans know, Anderson grew up playing basketball in Tuscaloosa, Ala., and didn’t embrace baseball until midway through high school. We’re not sure how good a basketball player he is now at 28, but he led his high school team to a state title and remains in great shape, assuming his left hamstring is healed after two months of rest.
At 6-foot-1, 185 pounds, I imagine Anderson being a Kyle Lowry type of point guard who would mesh well with the rest of the Bulls lineup, whoever that may be by the time they play again. We know he’s already a favorite of Bulls Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf, so all it would take is a text from Anderson to get the ball rolling.
This Bulls COVID-19 outbreak is no laughing matter, of course, and it already is having an effect on their performance, as evidenced by recent losses to the Cleveland Cavaliers and Miami Heat. If the Bulls remain undermanned for the foreseeable future, it could damage their chances of finishing among the top four teams in the Eastern Conference and having home-court advantage in an opening playoff round.
The NBA was absolutely right in making the postponement call, even if the Bulls had eight healthy players, which is the league minimum for a team to play. Two of those players are rookie Marko Simonović and Tyler Cook, whom coach Billy Donovan breaks out only in case of emergency, basically leaving him with a one-man bench.
The only other option to postponing games would be for the NBA to allow the Bulls to add celebrity athletes to the roster to fill out the bench. If nothing else, it would garner the kind of media attention the league craves, while Bulls fans would eagerly await the arrival of the next celebrity player.
Since it was Anderson’s idea, he should be the first to receive a one-day contract, bookending his “Field of Dreams” walk-off home run in Dyersville, Iowa, with a “Court of Dreams” game at the UC.
Anderson already lives in the south suburbs, and as long as Reinsdorf approves, a workout at the Advocate Center in front of executive vice president of basketball operations Artūras Karnišovas, general manager Marc Eversley and Donovan could be scheduled at a moment’s notice.
It may seem absurd, but certainly Anderson is talented and athletic enough that he wouldn’t embarrass himself. And if Anderson got a shot, athletes and celebrities would clamor to be a Bull-for-a-Day.
Here are six other suggestions who should be on Karnišovas’ celebrity wish list:
The WNBA great just won a title with the Chicago Sky and may need a new challenge — or at least something to get her mind off the ineptitude of the Bears, of whom she tweeted during Sunday’s loss to the Green Bay Packers, adding: “#WeareWhoweThoughtWeWere.”
Parker would be a perfect choice for Sunday’s game with the Los Angeles Lakers, facing LeBron James in a matchup of basketball legends. With the Bears playing Monday night, everyone would be able to watch Bulls-Lakers to see two alleged G.O.A.T.’s go head to head.
The former president of the United States fancies himself a great outside threat and famously sank a 3-pointer last year while campaigning for then-presidential candidate Joe Biden in Michigan.
“That’s what I do,” Obama said as he swaggered off the court.
Eversley was even able to scout Obama recently at an event in Woodlawn. Obama made an unannounced entrance, addressed those in attendance about the importance of the South Side YMCA and drained a 3 as he left … after missing his first two attempts.
Still, that’s 33.3% on 3-point attempts, just below Nikola Vučević’s 34.0%.
The actor who plays Cousin Greg on HBO’s “Succession” is 6-foot-7 and thus qualifies as a rim protector on this undersized Bulls team.
Braun’s character’s basketball playing ability was recently debated on Uproxx.com, which posed the question: “Do you think Cousin Greg from ‘Succession’ can dunk a basketball?” The season finale of the popular HBO program aired Sunday, so if Braun can dunk a basketball, now is the time to find out.
The Chicago-born hip-hop star and actor was named MVP of the Celebrity Game during All-Star Weekend in 2020.
Unlike fellow Chicago rapper Kanye West, who wrote a song “We Should Have Never, Ever Let Michael Jordan Play for the Wizards,” Common hasn’t written anything remotely criticizing Bulls management for disrespecting MJ.
The actor and celebrity Chicago sports fan grew up up Buffalo Grove and played sports at Lake Forest High School, though he reportedly has said he was “unathletic.”
At 6-foot-5, he at least could be a presence in the middle and learn to play defense from Alex Caruso. Vaughn is currently playing Freddy Funkhouser on HBO’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm.”
The former U.S. Education Secretary also stands 6-5, which would make him a power forward on the current Bulls roster.
Duncan played hoops at Harvard and in Australia, and like Common, he once was named MVP of the Celebrity Game during All-Star Weekend in 2014. The former Chicago Public Schools CEO is running Creating Real Economy Destiny (Chicago C.R.E.D.), a nonprofit aimed at helping disadvantaged youths.
Local politicos have wondered whether Duncan will run for Chicago mayor in 2023.
Right now, however, the Bulls probably need him more.
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