On Wednesday night, the Chicago Bulls took another blow in the frontcourt when Daniel Gafford was ruled out for 2-4 weeks due to a dislocated thumb. He joins Wendell Carter Jr. (ankle) on the sidelined for Chicago, so the Bulls are left with very few options in the frontcourt. Aside from Lauri Markkanen and Thaddeus Young, the name you need to remember is Luke Kornet.
Jim Boylen praised Luke Kornet and then added this: "He'll be spread and take his open 3s. I did tell him I don't ever want him to dribble out to the 3-point line to take a 3, like he has done a couple times. We got that clarified."— K.C. Johnson (@KCJHoop) January 16, 2020
In Wednesday’s win over the Wizards, Bulls coach Jim Boylen turned to Kornet when Gafford went down early in the game. The Vanderbilt product ended up playing a team-high 35 minutes, scoring 10 points with four rebounds and two assists. Kornet also added a steal and two blocks for 12 fantasy points on ESPN.
Sure, the production wasn’t there, but a team-high 35 minutes? Boylen clearly is fine sending Kornet out there for extended time and we should see more of that with WCJ and Gafford sidelined. I still think Thaddeus Young will start in place of Gafford, but Kornet will be the first big off the bench. He’s a better 3-point shooter than Young as well at 34.5% in his three-year career. Boylen clearly likes the idea of Markkanen and Kornet for court spacing with Zach LaVine and Tomas Satoransky.
Kornet is only 1.2 percent owned on ESPN, so he’s more of a deeper add if you had WCJ and then Gafford. I also view Kornet as a good value play for Friday’s game vs. the Philadelphia 76ers depending on the price on DraftKings.