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RUMOR: Mark Bartelstein’s name coming up as potential front office target for Bulls

Mark Bartelstein, John Paxson, Bulls

Could the Chicago Bulls follow in the footsteps of the Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers and now New York Knicks and hire a former agent as their president? It’s quite possible since the Bulls are said to be looking to hire a new general manager this summer.

If Chicago goes that route, one name to keep an eye on is evidently Mark Bartelstein.

Two insiders with close ties to the Chicago media market — Joe Cowley of the Chicago Sun-Times and Nick Friedell of ESPN — mentioned Bartelstein as someone the Bulls could possibly hire if they decide to pursue the front-office model of hiring a player agent:

Joe Cowley, Chicago Sun Times: “Mark Bartelstein — The former investment banker turned super agent, founded Chicago-based Priority Sports and Entertainment, currently representing 24 NBA first-round picks.

“Bartelstein has the likes of Bradley Beal, Gordon Hayward and Kyle Lowry under his umbrella, and with franchises like the Lakers, Warriors and now the Knicks adding an agent to their front office, Bartelstein makes sense.”

ESPN’s Nick Friedell: “The name to keep an eye out for me, Mark Bartelstein. He is well respected all throughout the league as an agent, he’s based in the Chicago area, knows that team very well.”

The Bulls are expected to keep current general manager Gar Forman, but mostly as a scout. Whoever Chicago hires will still report to vice president John Paxson and Chief Operating Officer Michael Reinsdorf.

During the first half of the season, the Bulls went 19-36. They are in 10th place in the Eastern Conference standings. This season is the third year of the rebuild in Chicago, and so far, the team doesn’t appear to have made any giant leaps from 2018-19.

With that said, a change in the front office might just be the right step to take.