The Chicago Bulls went into the 2013 NBA Draft looking for specific players to round up their roster. They were looking for players that can knock down shots and stretch the floor. When superstar point guard Derrick Rose is driving to the basket, he will be able to kick the ball out to reliable perimeter guys.
The Bulls may have found that type of player in the first round of the draft. Enter Tony Snell, a 6-foot-7 swingman from the University of New Mexico (20th overall pick). He averaged 9.2 points, 2.4 rebounds and two assists per game for three years at New Mexico. But his greatest weapon is shooting, where he connected on 38 percent of his 3-point attempts for his career. That type of 3-point shooting can help the Bulls tremendously.
Snell brings more than his jump shot to the table. He brings some versatile skills as well. He is a smooth ball handler, very active on defense and brings tremendous length to play the two guard or small forward position. He displayed some of those attributes in this year’s summer league.
In the summer league, Snell had mixed results. He averaged 11.8 points and 6.6 rebounds in five games. His shot wasn’t falling consistently, but he proved he has the stroke and can shoot off the dribble. But like most rookies coming into the league, he struggled with the speed and physical nature of the game. He will have to develop some strength to compete with some of the bigger wing players.
The Bulls have big, long-term plans for Tony Snell. He will be able to watch and learn from guys like All-Star Luol Deng and an improving Jimmy Butler. The organization drafted a sleeper late in the first round, and with his skill set poised to improve, Snell will make an impact now or in the future.