Could the Bulls new practice facility be the missing piece to fixing the teams failures in attracting big name free agents to play in Chicago?
When it comes to NBA free agency, the Chicago Bulls seem to miss out on the biggest names every single summer, leaving fans both exasperated and frustrated. It would seem that given the team's history of success and the success they've seen the last few seasons as one of the NBA's elite teams, combined with having one of the most rabid fanbases in the country and with a bonafide superstar point guard in Derrick Rose on the squad, marquee players would jump at the chance to play professional basketball in the Windy City.
But that hasn't been the case at all.
Some have speculated that Bulls management is the real source of the problem -- breaking up the 90's dynasty and Michael Jordan no longer having ties to the organization that made him into a global icon -- while others contend the long, arduous trek from the north suburbs to the West Side of Chicago carries a ton of weight as well.
However, as the Bulls begin preparation on constructing their new practice facility just across the street from the United Center -- expected to be completed by the start of the 2014-15 season -- the team has an entirely new set of selling points that go beyond tradition, history, the Jordan statue, and an opportunity to compete for a title every year. These things obviously haven't been enough.
Now the team will have a brand new, state-of-the-art practice facility to use in their pitch (who doesn't like new things?), as well as an opportunity to sell a free agent on just how awesome it would be to live in downtown Chicago (who wouldn't want to do that if they could afford it?), giving them no more than a 15-minute commute to and from "work."
Of course, this is all just speculation and the Bulls could very well continue to whiff on big-name free agent signings, but there's no doubt that these "new" set of factors can and will help with recruitment and if you're a Bulls fan, you can't help but to be excited at the mere possibility of the free agency drought finally coming to an end.