Chicago Bulls: Team Updates, Key Players, and History
Chicago Bulls History and Highlights.
The Chicago Bulls compete in the Central Division in the Eastern Conference of the NBA league and plays its home games in the United Center. The team is one of the most famous sports organizations in the world thanks to Michael Jordan, who is the face not just of the Chicago Bulls, but of the NBA in general.
Founding and Early Years
The team was founded in 1966 and was the third organization from Chicago after the Chicago Stags and the Chicago Packers. The team posted a 33-48 record in their first season, which is the best record by an expansion team in their inaugural season.
Early Struggle With Attendance
The team struggled with attendance in the first years since joining the league, but things changed in the 1970s. Jerry Sloan, Chet Walker, and Norm Van Lier were players who brought winning basketball to Chicago and the Bulls soon were able to sell out games.
The First Michael Jordan Era
Still, the Bulls had no bigger success until Michael Jordan took the basketball world. MJ was drafted by the Bulls with the third pick in the 1984 NBA Draft and put the Bulls on the map for good.
Jordan Wins Rookie of the Year and Takes Off
After winning the Rookie of the year award, Jordan took off and became one of the best players in the league. Still, the Chicago Bulls had to grow for seven years with Jordan and won their first NBA championship in 1991. That was the first NBA Finals appearance for the Bulls, and they defeated the Lakers in five games. That was the beginning of the Michael Jordan era, which took not only the Bulls, but the entire league to a whole new level.
The Bulls defeated the Portland Trail Blazers in the 1992 NBA Finals and the Phoenix Suns the following season. Then, after winning three consecutive titles, Michael Jordan shocked the basketball world with his retirement.
Scottie Pippen was ready to take over as the best player on the Chicago Bulls team, but he couldn’t take the team to a deep playoff run.
After a year and a half, Jordan returned to basketball, and he was ready for the 1996-96 team. Coach Phil Jackson added another asset to the team in Dennis Rodman, and those Bulls won 72 games that season, a record that stood until 2015 when the Golden State Warriors went 73-9.
Bulls Win NBA Championship Three-Peat
The Chicago Bulls went on to win another three-peat. In 1996, they defeated the Settle Supersonics in 6 games and did the same against the Utah Jazz in the two following seasons. The Bulls won a total of 6 NBA championships in 8 seasons, which is the greatest dominance since the Boston Celtics won 8 consecutive championships in the 1960s.
End of an Era
Despite having a lot of great basketball left in the tank, the Bulls general manager Jerry Crouse decided to break the team. Coach Phil Jackson didn’t get a contract extension, and the Bulls were never the same again. Jordan retired for the second time, Pippen was traded to the Houston Rockets and the team fall to the last place in the Eastern Conference the following season.
The Chicago Bulls struggled for numerous years before building a Playoff team. With Ben Gordon and Luol Deng, they were back in the Playoffs in 2005 and reached the second round in 2007.
2008-2016: Derrick Rose
The best moment for the Chicago Bulls in the post-Jordan era happened in 2008 when the Bulls drafted Derrick Rose with the first pick in the NBA Draft.
Rose quickly took over the team and, in 2011, became the youngest player ever to win the MVP award. It seemed like the glory days were back in the Windy City, but it all went down when Rose tore his ACL in 2012. He was never the same player after the recovery, and he left the team in 2016.
With Rose leaving the team, Jimmy Butler took over as the leader, but he also went elsewhere the following year.
After a couple of struggling seasons, the Bulls had a good 2021 offseason by signing DeMar DeRozan, who was added to Zach LaVine. Lonzo Ball and Nikola Vucevic are also in, which makes this Bulls’ roster very promising for the years to come.