With Dwyane Wade Now A Cleveland Cavalier, Chicago Bulls’ Lauri Markkanen Can’t Play With Childhood Idol, But Can Shine On Young Hoiberg Team

Chicago Bulls forward Lauri Markkanen. Photo Credit: CSN

Chicago Bulls forward Lauri Markkanen Chats With Brandon ‘Scoop B’ Robinson On Scoop B Radio. Press Play Below To Listen


News out of the midwest this week was that Dwyane Wade reached a buyout agreement with the Chicago Bulls and as expected he signed a deal with the Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Bulls are going young with Zach Lavine, Denzel Valentine, Bobby Portis, Kris Dunn, Jerian Grant and Lauri Markkanen.

Speaking of Markkanen, the talented Finnish forward averaged  15.6 points, 7.2 rebounds last season as an Arizona Wildcat. The former Wildcast says that despite his 7-foot size, he grew up liking Wade and his game.

Unfortunately, the rookie forward won’t get a chance to play alongside him at the United Center with his move to Cleveland. 

Former Chicago Bulls guard Dwyane Wade. Photo Credit: Rolling Stone

On a recent episode of Scoop B Radio, Markkanen says that his eyes were glued to his television set during the 2006 NBA Finals when Wade, then a member of the Miami Heat averaged a heroic 34.7 PPG 7.8 RBG and 3.8 AST in the Finals against the Dallas Mavericks.

“He was super quick,” Markkanen told me on Scoop B Radio. “And impacted the game in a lot of ways so I really liked how he played.”

Markkanen has a chance to get ample playing time with a young nucleus under Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg. Tall guards like Giannis Antetokounmpo lead the pack of positionless players who rule the NBA. Markkanen likes the challenge. “I played guard my whole life and then developed my inside game a couple years back,” he said.

“So it’s really whatever coach wants me to play. I can play whatever you ask me to.”

Having played his whole career in Europe and coming to the U.S. playing at Arizona, Markkanen believes he’s become well-rounded. “It’s more physical here,” he said.

“And I think half court basketball is weaker back home because you have a shorter shot clock. But the transition basketball is something that really stood out to me because you really have to get back on defense because players are more athletic.”

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About Brandon Robinson

Brandon 'Scoop B' Robinson is a managing editor and columnist at RESPECT Magazine. Follow him on Twitter: @ScoopB and Instagram: @Scoop_B. As a 12 year old, he was a Nets reporter from 1997-1999, co-hosting a show called Nets Slammin' Planet with former New Jersey Net Albert King and Nets play-by-play man Chris Carrino. He's also been a writer and radio host at CBS and a staff writer at The Source Magazine. He's a graduate of both Eastern University and Hofstra University. You can catch him daily on the Scoop B Radio Podcast. Visit ScoopBRadio.com to listen. For inquiries and to contact Brandon 'Scoop B' Robinson visit ScoopB.com