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Rumor: The impact Zach LaVine’s breakout season is having on a potential Bulls trade

Zach LaVine, Arturas Karnisovas, Bulls

Chicago Bulls guard Zach LaVine is the team’s first All-Star since Jimmy Butler. He is rapidly ascending as one of the top offensive players in basketball.

By all accounts, his brilliance is also negating any semblance of trade availability he may have once had.

K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago reports three rival executives mentioned LaVine’s name was not one “actively in the trade market.” The Bulls, after years of toiling and uncertainty, have apparently found their cornerstone player.

It is easy to see why the Bulls would want to build a roster around LaVine. The 25-year-old is averaging 28.8 points, 5.3 rebounds and 5.0 assists through his first 31 games. LaVine is shooting over 52 percent from the field, including 44 percent from beyond the arc on 8.1 attempts per game.

But while the numbers are stellar enough, it’s how LaVine is getting his buckets that is even more awesome to behold.

Nearly all of LaVine’s 3-pointers have been above the break, often regarded as a far less efficient shot than the corner three. However, LaVine has made 43.5 percent of those tries. He is also making a whopping 48.6 percent of all pull-up 3-pointers, per NBA.com. That kind of efficiency makes the former UCLA product unbelievably dangerous as a shot creator, especially considering he can also get to the basket and finish in explosive fashion.

Chicago has now won five of its last six after Wednesday night’s overtime victory against the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Bulls sit in sixth place in the Eastern Conference, much in part because of LaVine’s outstanding All-Star season.

It is becoming abundantly clear LaVine is the face of the franchise. He will not be going anywhere at next month’s trade deadline, and he’s hoping to finally make his first playoff appearance of his career this season.