K.C. Johnson's answers

K.C., I was shocked when I read the list of players drafted this year and didn't see the name of Predrag Savovic from Hawaii anywhere at all, considering he was pegged as late first round, early second round. As a sharp-shooting small forward, don't you think he could help the Bulls as an undrafted free agent? Looking at the roster and anticipated comings and goings, there is room for him (even with the two second-round picks and an added veteran big man) if you include the three-man "Injury" list. --Andrew, Northfield

Sorry. Good ol' Predrag isn't in the Bulls' plans. They aren't even signing many undrafted free agents for their summer-league team because they want to get more experience for all their young players.

Now that the Bulls have Jay Williams, will they have any money left to sign a free agent or two, like a Keon Clark, for example? --Christopher C. Butler, Newport, Del.

Williams' rookie contract has been factored into the Bulls' plans and they have roughly $5.5 million available under the salary cap. Clark is a restricted free agent who is expected to either re-sign with Toronto or be involved with a sign-and-trade to a team where he can start. The Bulls are looking for back-ups, as they are committed to playing Eddy Curry and Tyson Chandler around 30 minutes per game if they can stay out of foul trouble. The future is now. The young players will play.

When people look back on last year they emphasize Chandler's development more than Curry's. Do you agree? Why? --Milt Scott, Wilmette

I do agree. But I don't think the discrepancy is malicious or anything. I think Chandler gets a little more attention because he was involved in the Elton Brand trade and thus is being watched a little more closely. I also think he showed more flashes of greatness. I maintain that Curry will be an excellent player but that Chandler has a chance to go off the charts. That's just my opinion. And, in a common refrain from this feature of last season, I've been wrong many times before.

K.C., What's your realistic prediction for the upcoming season for the Bulls? Playoffs or another lottery? And what free agents do you see coming here? --Christopher Fedail, Los Angeles

I'm firmly in the camp of another lottery appearance. I think a little perspective has been lost since the drafting of Jay Williams. Playoffs are being mentioned almost casually. But this is the same team that, lest we forget, lost 17 of 18 down the stretch of last season. They're still going to be young. They're still going to have trouble defending teams. I definitely think they're going to show a lot of improvement. But to get to the playoffs, the Bulls would roughly have to double their victory total from last season. I don't see that happening.

Hey, KC! Who do we have playing in the Utah summer league? I would love to see Chandler, Curry, Crawford and the draft picks play so they can gel together! Any idea? --Daniel, Tallahassee, Fla.

Your wish has been granted. All are slated to play in Utah. Williams is so eager that he's returning to Chicago on July 5, almost two weeks before camp begins. Krause isn't signing many undrafted free agents so that he can get more playing time for all these youngsters and let them get a chance to play together.

What do you think about Jamal Crawford's situation? Should Chicago trade him? I know Krause said Jamal would stay. But you know if you are talking about Krause, you can't trust him. Which one is the best Jay-Travis or Jay-Jamal? --Aziz Unal, Istanbul

I think Jay-Jamal can definitely work. It's a matter of everybody buying into the idea. Jamal has an ability to play either guard position and ended last season as one of the team's best shooters. I think a backcourt of Jay, Jamal and Trenton Hassell gives the Bulls plenty of flexibility and potential.

KC, I love J-Krau! Anyway, doesn't the threesome of Rose, Crawford and Williams sound like an unstoppable trio? All three can drive, pull up or dish. How does an opponent set their defense? Why does it seem to be a given that Crawford is gone? Makes no sense to me. Your take, please. Thanks! --Cliff Jordan, Chicago

My take is that I'm having difficulty answering this question after you confessed love for Jerry Krause. Seriously, though, I agree: I think you keep Jamal at all costs. He's got too much talent to be sent elsewhere.

With the pick of Ja(y)son Williams with the No. 2 pick, the Bulls are finally resembling an NBA team. But, reading some comparisons by scouts and "knowledgeable" basketball insiders, I have seen Jay compared to about seven or eight different NBA point guards. But the one comparison that I have seen only once is of him and Isiah Thomas. Do you think that is a good comparison (minus the poor sport or thumb stuck in mouth) for Jay? Pretty lofty but I think with his desire and skills, his career could mirror Isiah's. Or do you think I need to up my medication? --Lance Naegele, Phoenix

How much are you on? If you talk to Jay, that's the comparison you'll hear the most. He idolized Isiah growing up and many scouts say his ability to get to the rim and penetrate at such a small height is similar to Thomas. We'll see. Let's just hope Jay doesn't go the way of another smallish Duke point guard, Bobby Hurley. And I don't see any way that he does.

Thanks for your questions. Talk to you next season,


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