Let’s take “washed reference” levels up to maximum levels and start this post out with a reference to Arrested Development’s sympathetic portrayal of a street bum from 1992.
Ignoring the fact that AD (the real AD, pre furry-face Anthony, who is still welcome to come save the Chicago Bulls franchise whenever he so chooses) spelled their “Wendal”‘s name differently (a little off-putting but appropriate spelling for a derelict) — the young man who now plays for the Bulls with that Christian name who probably hasn’t heard “Tennessee” more than 2.5 times in his life is far from “arrested” developmentally and this summer has proven himself to be far more than a “bum.”
As I front flip out of that mess of washed relatability (elder millenials, please like and share my stuff in your 30 and over Facebook groups!), here’s some more looks at Wendell Carter tearing shit up in Las Vegas.
The Bulls’ 7th pick in last month’s draft has surely provided a shot of that kind of optimism one hasn’t seen since that time between the L.A. riots and the O.J. verdict, back when an eclectic group like AD could appear on Saturday Night Live (still waiting on the Wu tho…)
Carter was a “make sense” pick that didn’t spark much of the Bulls fans collective imagination upon his calling by Adam Silver, but what does spark Bulls fans imaginations today outside of picturing border-like situations of captivity for Garpax and the rest of the Bulls front office while we get our tiki torches and storm the Advocate Center to “take our team back!?”
Truth is, Forman and Paxson — or the random, manatee-pushed ball marked “Wendell Carter Jr.” that they accepted a couple weeks ago — may have hit on something pretty good.
Funny-enough, WCJ (just trying out nicknames at this point…) looked so often like a guard to me even among an exclusive selection of his peers in Las Vegas over the past several days. Maybe its the jerseys, which scream “10-day contract” on all the guys out there, but Carter didn’t at many times look physically intimidating, like the guy we could hope would hold down a front court with Lauri Markkanen for the next several years.
But then he would jump, and swat and dunk and he looked readier than Tiffany Haddish in her $4,000 dress.
The idea of seeing Carter, with his reserve bars all the way up and fire engine red, powering his legs to do those things officially in the fall and effectively against the very best competition doesn’t seem far-fetched now. This has been a wonderful mid-summer diversion and much more substantive than the glorious summer league championship run of ’16, which took place during a similarly dead free agency period (until it wasn’t, and boy did that not amount to nothing…)
Unlike ’16, we can’t imagine any desperate reaches for credibility later in July, there’s no need to add overpriced and over-worn talent to the current Bulls nucleus and any public desire to do so has not been expressed, this is a team that played it loose with ‘Ol Man Zach LaVine and almost sent him out to the Sacramento pasture.
As it stands though, LaVine will bring his 23 years of hard-earned wisdom back to the fold, Lauri is getting his weight up with the most delicious Nordic treats Chicago has to offer and Mr. Wendell is making a mid-July Las Vegas trip worth it even without a big fight nowhere on the upcoming schedule.
This is not a Big 3, and they certainly aren’t “Alphas,” but they’re workable and if Carter is any proof, they’re gonna put in work.
Follow Kyle Means on Twitter @Wrk_Wrt; Follow We Are Regal Radio on Twitter @regalradio1 and on Facebook under We Are Regal Radio