Jim Boylen says Jabari Parker must lock into practicing, playing hard with Bulls
Chicago Bulls head coach Jim Boylen has been cracking down on his young roster, pushing them harder than ever in an attempt to shape up what has so far been a disappointing team. On Sunday, he focused on pushing this mentality on one player specifically, Jabari Parker.
Reporter: "From your seat, is Jabari still connected to the team?
Boylen: "From my seat, he needs to lock into practicing hard, playing hard and honoring the values of the team, which I’ve set forth for the team. Every day is an opportunity to do that."
— K.C. Johnson (@KCJHoop) December 23, 2018
Jabari Parker signed a two year, $40 million contract with the Bulls last offseason, joining his hometown team. Chicago hoped he would benefit from a change of scenery and remain injury free to live up to the hype he had when he was drafted second overall in the 2014 draft.
So far, the contract looks like a disaster for the Bulls. Parker has averaged 15.2 points a game, which looks decent, but he is also shooting 13.3 shots a game. He rarely gets to the free throw line and is shooting a disappointing 29.3 percent from beyond the arc.
Those numbers point to the fact that Parker has become a mid-range shooter and not a particularly efficient one at that. Minimal free throw attempts show he is not driving enough, and opponents are more than willing to let him launch from three.
On top of this, Parker has not meshed with the team and lost his starting role. Clearly, Jim Boylen is not pleased with his effort or his practice habits.
Unless Parker completely turns it around, the Bulls will certainly regret offering him such a large contract. Hopefully, the forward can get back into a groove and at least partially live up to the expectations that come from a number two draft pick.