10 Best Chicago Bulls Players Since Michael Jordan Retired

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10 Best Chicago Bulls Players Since Michael Jordan Retired

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Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images

Michael Jordan has gone down in history as the greatest player the NBA has ever seen. The legacy he left behind will never be equaled. In the Jordan era, the Chicago Bulls were the premier team in the league that fans loved and other teams feared. But the Bulls' dominance came to a screeching end when Jordan retired.

When Jordan left the Bulls in 1998 after leading Chicago to their sixth championship and second three-peat, he left behind a team that was unsure of how to win without him. It didn't help that other key members of the team left at the same time -- Scottie Pippen and Dennis Rodman being the most prominent. In just a matter of months since experiencing their sixth championship glory, the Bulls fell from the top of the NBA to the near bottom.

Thus, the early post-Jordan era was full of losses and a grueling rebuilding stage. The Bulls were in a position they hadn’t been in years: they had an absence of star power, and their future as a marketable franchise was put into question. At the time, then-GM Jerry Krause tried his best to find the future through draft picks and trades, but sadly none of them were the next “Jordan."

In recent years, the Bulls have seen an upswing in talent, but that only came through hard work and sheer luck. While Chicago was stuck in a rut, that isn't to say they didn't have All-Star athletes who called the United Center their home.

Truth is, there have been several players in the last sixteen years who gave Chicago their best, and fans should be thankful for the work they put in. These are the 10 best Bulls players since Jordan retired.

Tracy Martin is an NBA writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @TracyMartin23 or add him to your network on Google.

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10. Ron Artest

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Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE/Getty Images

Before he was Metta World Peace he was Ron Artest, a fresh-faced rookie out of St. John's who the Bulls selected with the No. 16 pick in the 1999 NBA Draft. Artest played with the Bulls for two-and-a-half years, averaging about 12.5 points and four rebounds per game. He made the NBA All-Rookie Second Team in the 1999–2000 season.

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9. Elton Brand

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Jonathan Daniel/Stringer

Elton Brand was selected with the No. 1 pick in the 1999 NBA draft. He averaged an impressive 20.1 points and 10 rebounds per game in his rookie year. During his time on the Bulls, Brand had as many fans as he had critics. Despite this, he was the recipient of a lot of respect for his efforts on the floor.

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8. Jamal Crawford

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Jamal Crawford was a very capable athlete, but he never fully 'gelled' with the Bulls. He is best remembered for his outstanding play in a game on Apr. 11, 2004 against the Toronto Raptors where he scored 50 points and went for 6-for-11 behind the three-point line.

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7. Nate Robinson

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Despite his brief time on the Bulls, Nate Robinson left a memorable impact. In a time of strong point guards throughout the league, Robinson helped the Bulls compete and led Chicago to a much better record than expected in the 2012-13 season.

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6. Ben Gordon

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Ben Gordon started his career in the league making an impact. He became the first rookie in NBA history to win the NBA Sixth Man Award. On Dec. 27, 2008, Gordon surpassed Scottie Pippen as the Bulls' career leader in three-pointers made. Gordon was a fan-favorite from the beginning, but as time went on, he and the Bulls both went their separate ways.

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5. Kirk Hinrich

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It's without a doubt that Kirk Hinrich should be recognized as one of the best floor leaders the Bulls have ever had. Coined “Captain Kirk” for his aptness on the floor, the 6-foot-3, 190-pound point guard received team captain nominations four years in a row back in his heyday. Impressively, Hinrich is the Bulls all-time leader in three-point field goals.

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4. Tyson Chandler

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Tyson Chandler will go down as one of the best defensive players the Bulls ever had. It's one of the more tragic moments in recent Bulls history that Chandler didn't stay with the team as it matured to the point it's at right now. His strength on defense really could help push Chicago to the next level.

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3. Luol Deng

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Luol Deng was a very capable player when he played with the Bulls. Deng was efficient on both sides of the court. Adding to his versatility, Deng was also capable of leading the team when needed.

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2. Joakim Noah

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Joakim Noah has been a consistent force for the Bulls since he was selected in the 2007 NBA Draft. Every year since then, he has ranked among the top centers in the league. His strong play, attention to detail and masterful execution on both sides of the court make him the undisputed second-best player on the team and arguably the team's real leader.

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1. Derrick Rose

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The No. 1 best player since Jordan hung up his uniform shouldn't surprise anyone. Derrick Rose’s performance on the team is nothing short of legendary. The Bulls selected Rose as the No. 1 pick in the 2009 NBA Draft. Rose has accomplished more in just a few years than other players do in their lifetimes. One of his strongest achievements will no doubt stand the test of time. Rose is the youngest player to win the MVP at 23-years-old. His return for the 2014-15 season is well-expected to bring back the explosive offensive skills that wowed fans a few years ago.

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