The Chicago Bulls enter NBA free agency in the 2023 offseason at a crossroads. Nikola Vucevic is a Bulls' free agent, and Lonzo Ball is heading for a third knee surgery that may cost him yet another season. There are plenty of Bulls free agent target rumors out there as the NBA offseason begins, and several would hurt the team more than they would help. Here are the two Bulls free agent targets the team must avoid signing in 2023 NBA free agency.

The Bulls won a play-in game this season but then lost to the Miami Heat to miss the postseason. They’ve now made the playoffs just twice in the last eight campaigns and haven’t won a playoff series since 2015. Chicago is not a player or two away from contention. The franchise needs a hard reset, and no single player in 2023 NBA free agency can give that to them.

As painful as it might be, letting Vucevic go and trading their best assets is the best course of action for the franchise this offseason. That said, if the team does decide to bring back the big man and go for it again, there are a few Bulls free-agent targets they shouldn’t pursue.

The team could use a 3-and-D wing, a point guard to replace Ball, and more rim protection. The players below could fill two of those roles, but the Bulls should stay away at all costs.

2. Jerami Grant

Jerami Grant is a solid 3-and-D wing who averaged 22.3, 19.2, and 20.5 points per game in the last three seasons with the Detroit Pistons and Portland Trail Blazers.

The problem is, he’s made $20 million a year in those three seasons and is unlikely to take a pay cut. Grant has also won a total of just 76 games in those three campaigns.

Grant is your typical good stats on a bad team guy. On those lottery-bound squads, where he made a lot of money and played a lot of minutes, the numbers are excellent. The last time he was on a team where he made a deep playoff run (2019-20 Denver Nuggets) he averaged just 12.0 points per game and played under 30 minutes per.

The former Syracuse player can be a contributor on a contender if he signed a deal for around $12-$15 million and was willing to go back to playing under 30 minutes per game.

As a Bulls' free agent target, Grant would likely want the money and the minutes he’s been getting the last few seasons. And if that’s the case, his time and touches would likely come at the expense of Patrick Williams, who is still one of the Bulls’ most promising players.

Saying the Bulls shouldn’t sign Grant in NBA free agency isn’t a shot at the player. It is just a realistic assessment of where he and the team are at right now.

1. Kyrie Irving

Don’t! Do! It!

The NBA is a star-driven league, and nearly every team believes they are just that one big superstar away from NBA title contention. The Boston Celtics believed it. The Brooklyn Nets believed it. And so did the Dallas Mavericks.

All three of these teams thought they could bring in a star like Kyrie Irving, and he’d make them contenders. However, the supremely talented point guard tanked all three of these organizations.

Since Kyrie left Boston, the Celtics have made two Eastern Conference Finals and an NBA Finals. The Nets went from having one of the most talented trios ever assembled in Irving, James Harden, and Kevin Durant, to a complete mess that had to panic trade all three of them in the last two seasons.

And the Mavs were two games over .500 when they traded for Irving at the 2023 NBA trade deadline but finished 38-44 and missed the playoffs.

If the Bulls still think they are contenders and want to (foolishly) try to make the playoffs in the 2023-24 season, the first major step should be getting a talented veteran point guard to replace Lonzo Ball. And if they do decide to go that way, throwing a boatload of money at Irving could be tempting.

Chicago must fight that urge at all costs.

Kyrie is a franchise killer, and given the reins of his own team would be disastrous. Maybe Irving could join LeBron James again and win a championship. But without a revered veteran to keep him in line (and maybe even with one, as KD found out), the results will be catastrophic.

If the Bulls want to continue trying to win now, that’s their decision, and you have to at least respect it from a conviction standpoint. However, no matter what they do, signing Kyrie Irving is a horrible, terrible, no good, very bad idea.