2014 NBA Draft: 5 Players The Chicago Bulls Should Target

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2014 NBA Draft: 5 Players The Chicago Bulls Should Target

NBA
Jerome Miron - USA Today Sports

Unbelievably, the Chicago Bulls are tied for the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference. Despite losing superstar Derrick Rose for the season again and trading forward Luol Deng, the Bulls have continued to roll and play with passion under head coach Tom Thibodeau. "Thibs" has inspired this team time and time again and squeezed out every possible win that he can from him. That speaks to his extraordinary ability to game plan, coach and inspire, and it also speaks to the team's willingness to listen to what he preaches.

While things are going better than expected this season, next season is likely to bring plenty of changes to the basketball landscape in Chicago. They're likely to add at least one notable free agent during the offseason, and it's more than likely they will amnesty Carlos Boozer's contract in order to cut salary for the offseason. With that move, forward Taj Gibson, who plays stellar defense and has come into his own lately, will likely slide into the starting lineup. It's also possible that Nikola Mirotic could come from overseas to play in the Bulls' starting lineup next season.

With so much roster turnover and shifting around of players in and out of the starting lineup, how the Bulls handle the draft will be very interesting. As long as the Bobcats make the playoffs, which they're currently on pace to do, the Bulls will have two first round draft picks this season. Where it stands right now, they would hold both the 16th and 19th picks in the draft. Two picks at that level can add significant talent to a team that already figures to be solid in most areas.

Due to Rose's injury history, it would be nice to have another point guard on the roster. D.J. Augustin, who has revived his career in Chicago this season, could be that guy. However, if he can get more money somewhere else, then he's likely to depart. For that reason, point guard could be a good pick for the Bulls with one of their two first-round picks. They also could stand to add some size at forward positions for guys coming off of the bench. When teams have groups of players with big size, they seem to come in waves and not relent. Especially playing in Thibodeau's defensive system, athletic forwards could really flourish.

The Bulls don't have any glaring holes on their team, but they do need to add some depth. That depth may be best provided by players who can play both forward and guard and be versatile on both sides of the ball. Based on what they figure to be looking for in the draft this offseason, here are five players who the Bulls should target.

Jacob Kornhauser is a writer for RantSports.com. "Like" him on Facebook, follow him on Twitter or add him to your Google+ network.

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5. G/F Kyle Anderson, UCLA

UCLA
Cary Edmondson - USA Today Sports

Anderson provides versatility by being able to play either the two or three on offense. At 6-foot-9 with solid ball-handling skills, Anderson provides an interesting skill set. Coach Tom Thibodeau would love to have his size and length on defense, especially if he proves to have the footwork to play solid defense at the NBA level. He also is averaging almost 15 PPG in college, so he can put the ball in the basket as well. The overall skill set that Anderson possesses should make him attractive to the Bulls.

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4. G Jordan Clarkson, Missouri

Jordan
Dak Dillon - USA Today Sports

While his tendency to force shots needs to go away, Clarkson's ability to drive the lane is among the best in college basketball. Some of the athletic plays that he has made at Missouri show glimpses of his superstar potential. He still needs to improve his jump shot, but his athleticism and ability to drive help to make up for that as of now. As a potential backup to Derrick Rose, Clarkson makes sense.

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3. F Willie Cauley-Stein, Kentucky

Willie
Mark Zerof - USA Today Sports

Somewhat overlooked because of some of the other star players on Kentucky, not many people realize just how good Cauley-Stein is. He doesn't score a lot because he's not asked to, but he does average close to seven rebounds a game and his athleticism is off the charts. At 7-feet tall, his ability to play the No. 4 or 5 in the offense is extremely important. Again, Thibodeau would love to be able to plug in Cauley-Stein and have a lineup that makes it very difficult to drive the lane against.

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2. G/F James Young, Kentucky

James
Mark Zerof - USA Today Sports

Like Anderson, Young is a very versatile player who can play multiple positions on offense. His size and length can help immensely on defense, and playing with other stars at Kentucky should help him adjust to an NBA offense out of the gate. He doesn't have quite as much upside as Anderson, but he might be considered the more "sure thing". At the next level, he figures to be a productive member of any team, whether it be starting or coming off the bench.

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1. F Aaron Gordon, Arizona

Aaron
Ron Chenoy - USA Today Sports

A freshman sensation of sorts in Arizona this season, Gordon has shown he can score and rebound. He's averaging almost 12 points per game while grabbing almost eight rebounds per game. That combination of size and scoring ability is something that's coveted in the NBA. While he's undersized for his skill set, he plays bigger than his 6-foot-9 frame and has upside. Since he's only played one year in college, there's plenty of room for improvement and the Bulls could slowly work him into the rotation until they felt he was ready to get quality minutes.

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