Written by Darin Ford | 10 June 2012

Will Barton is a 6'6" 185 pound lanky guard with skill and scoring ability from Memphis University. Barton is a good athlete with great size for his position (theFrom DraftExpress.com shooting guard).

Barton averaged 18 points per game along with 2.9 assists. DraftExpress.com says that in the best case scenario he ends up being Manny Harris -- which, is pretty good.

Barton will be a solid pro because he can score and is big for the perimeter. However, he needs to add strength and work on his passing in order to really thrive in the pros.

Checkout a quick story from Blog-a-Bull covering Barton (read the full here):

Barton has, coincidentally, been working out with John Lucas III in Houston to improve his shooting and ball handling. As an athletic 6-6 shooting guard, he's aware that he'll be called upon to do more with the ball, move smarter without it, and that being a great defender is his key to establishing a place in the NBA.

Unprompted about defense, specifically, Barton said of his pre-draft workouts: "Defense is real important in the NBA. If you can lock down someone, you can find minutes in a rotation."

After describing his strengths of creating good shots with his athleticism and putting the ball in the basket and how he's putting in two- and three-a-days, I asked what his greatest weakness is, and he was quick in a manner that was humble and genuine to say: "Consistency with my shot."

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Written by Darin Ford | 09 June 2012

Alright, so to recap the last ten days of this feature, I thought it would be cool to let you guys call the shots and who you think the Bulls should take/what they should do on draft night.

So, from the below selections and articles, take your pick. If you think they should do something we didn't write about, let us know and comment! We'd love to have your submissions! But, back to the point, here are the former 29DTP29 article links:
Comment your thoughts, takes and beliefs below! I also took the liberty to give you a video recapping the 2012 NBA Draft Combine. See that below:

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Written by Darin Ford | 08 June 2012

For the preface to this series of posts outlining the best draft night scenarios for the Bulls, we talked about ESPN's Chad Ford saying that John Jenkins is the guy for the Bulls. On our official Day One of this segment, Jenkins was the featuree, again.

Whelp, here he is again!

After watching the NBA Draft Combine on ESPNU the last two days that was ironically held in Chicago, I feel reassured that John could be our guy at No. 29. Chad Ford released another mock draft since our first 29DTP29 post and still had Jenkins coming to Chi-Town with the 29th pick.

Jenkins can really play and shoot the lights out of the ball. He would give great relieve minutes for the Bulls at both guard positions.

Since we've already discussed Jenkins, I'm going to cut this article short here and just give you guys some links to click on to read our previous coverage on him.

Here you are:
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Written by Kyle Samples | 08 June 2012

Hello and welcome to Horns To The Hardwood. My name is Kyle Samples and I am an assistant editor here and owner of Chicago Bulls Fan Talk, a Facebook page. I'm 16-years-old and an avid Bulls fan. When Darin approached me with a partnership agreement I was excited to write on here and couldn't wait. I live in Wisconsin but grew up in Illinois, any team in Chicago (except the Cubs) I root for.

Do you know Derrick Rose? I'm sure you do, when he went down in the first game of the first round in the 2012 Playoffs Chicago was in awe. I've never heard a stadium that quiet with their team about to win their first playoff game. Was it the coaches fault? Not at all, like Richard Hamilton said, "they were gaining momentum and we didn't want that to carry over into next game he needed to be out there." The doctor said surgery went great but expected a 8-12 month recovery, Derrick Rose is now likely out most of next season as well with his torn ACL.

In the absence of our MVP we ask who should step in to take his spot? Should we stay with C.J. Watson and JL3, or should we pursue another point guard? Steve Nash? Kirk Hinrich?
Rumors have stated the Bulls look to part with C.J. Watson. I think that is a good choice only because he has his moments he isn't somebody I would be willing to trust to score and fill in for Derrick. C.J. Watson is a good guard to have off the bench to fill in for minutes at a time not games or a season. JL3 also has his highlight moments but he can't start unless he works on his passing. The time on the shot clock winds down to single digits almost every time before the ball leaves his hands causing rushed shots and misses. JL3 should stay with the Bulls and learn Thibs' offense a little more before he is trusted with a starting position.

Steve Nash, great pick up for the Bulls in my opinion, he may be getting older but the man can score and that's what we need in Derricks injury recovery time. Steve Nash would fit right in with the Bulls offense and defensive stance that coach Thibs loves to push. If he can put in 18-20 points per game and we pick-up our offense with other players we will still be championship contenders.

Captin Kirk, would also be a good pick up. He has already played for the Bulls and with Derrick he knows how to score and has a good three point shot. I think Kirk would fit in well with the offense and defense as well as Steve Nash. So who is the better pick...?

Steve Nash. But, Why?

He can score more, he is more experinced and I believe he would fit in better with the Bulls. With the lack of depth at the PG position I believe he would exceed in his expectations and help us get back to the playoffs more than Kirk would. 

Do you think im wrong? Comment and tell me why!

Kyle Samples is a 16-year-old assistant editor for HttH. Kyle started his sports media career on his own by starting a Facebook page called Chicago Bulls Fan Talk. Kyle is instrumental in HttH's success and does a good deal of work offline too. Continue to look for his articles and like his Facebook page! 
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Written by Darin Ford | 07 June 2012

In this newest segment of 29DTP29, I wanted to change it up a little. So, today's scenario is the "trade up and upgrade at a position" situation.Photo taken from Rivals.com

They're have been many rumblings as of late regarding the Chicago Bulls trading a couple of their pieces to bring in another All-Star player. Well, I think that they may be just as well suited to move up in the draft and completely protect the PG spot with Marquis Teague -- someone who would be a top 10 pick in the 2013 NBA Draft.

Marquis Teague, not to be confused with Jeff Teague, his bother, won a national championship this past season playing for the University of Kentucky Wildcats alongside the likes of Anthony Davis (this years consensus No. 1 pick), Terrence Jones (possible lottery pick), Doron Lamb (late-first to early-second) and Darius Miller (mid-second).

Marquis is a 6'2" 190 pound pure point guard with elite quickness who can flat out score. He's one of the longest pure point guards in this draft. Teague is a winner that most definitely knows how to run a ball club and is someone that I think can step in right away and start for the Bulls. I think that Teague could be an upgrade over C.J. Watson -- who may be waived this off-season anyway. And of course, the biggest factor on every-one's mind is the state of Derrick Rose and the timetable for his return to basketball coming off of the torn Left ACL he suffered in April.

The Bulls could move a C.J. Watson, Ronnie Brewer or Jimmy Butler packaged with thier No. 29 pick and move up at least 5 spots. Plenty of playoff teams could use C.J. Watson as a back-up point guard and third guard. Whereas, Ronnie Brewer would fit nicely on a Boston Celtics team that needs athleticism, size, depth and defense.

Marquis Teague is alike Darren Collison. Collison was drafted by the New Orleans Hornets to be a long term back-up for Chris Paul a few years back. It just so happens that that season was the year that CP3 went down with a knee injury early and Collison had to be the starter. Darren ended up averaging 18 points and 9 assists as the starter for the Hornets. Pretty good, eh?

From what I noted above, Teague could be our Darren Collison and the long term back-up and eventual sixth man in Chicago. If that doesn't work out, then maybe GM Gar Forman could move Teague for another piece. Only time will tell.

Bottom line here is that Teague is a player and has the potential to be the best point guard selected in this draft when it's all said and done. He has more upside and is younger than Damian Lillard (the current top PG in the 2012 draft class) and is a much better scorer and is quicker than Kendall Marshall (UNC's Ricky Rubio).

Let's hope that the Bulls can see what they can do and consider the situation. They may have to guarantee him, much like Oklahoma City guaranteed G Reggie Jackson last year at this time. 

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Written by Darin Ford | 06 June 2012

Want a sleeper? Here's the biggest: Darius Johnson-Odom a.k.a. DJO.

When it comes to sleeper prospects that aren't too high on anyone's draft board, it's him. He's a left-handed scoring combo guard that can stroke it from three and penetrate with the best of 'em. DJO is someone that will be really hard to guard in the NBA after he gets his feet wet because of his all-around skill set enhanced with his strength at 215 pounds.

DJO's success in college is yet another hint to his coming success in the NBA -- and he will be successful. He's a good athlete and long enough to play the two-guard position.

In my eyes, he's Toney Douglas 2.0. Toney, coincidentally, was the 29th pick overall in the 2009 NBA Draft selected by the Lakers but then sent to the Knicks that night. Toney was a lot like DJO in college. Their biggest similarity, of course, is their knack to put the ball in the hoop. Douglas averaged 10.6 points per game in 2010-2011 on a Knicks team that made the playoffs.

Johnson-Odom would be a great fit for the Bulls. Not only could he be a back-up ball handler, but a safety-valve shooting guard in the rotation as well as a rookie. He's one of those guys that will translate nicely to the NBA with his play style.

With the possibilities of Derrick Rose being out all year and the fact that C.J. Watson could be waived to rid of his contract before July 11 so the Bulls won't have to pay as much on the luxury tax, Darius could be an ideal fit and pick-up for Chicago that late in the first round.

Look for DJO to slide-up the draft boards in several mock drafts in the coming weeks.

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Written by Collin Wilson | 05 June 2012

Scott Machado isn't the most anticipated player coming out of college but he is definitely a versatile one. His strength is finding the open man for a shot, which is mainly why he led the NCAA in assists this past season (9.9 apg).

When Machado wasn't finding forward Mike Glover or guard Lamont Jones he transitioned his game to scoring helping him with an average of 13.6 points per game this season.

Machado reminds me of an non-flashy Rajon Rondo. He can pass great and has showed he can lead a team with post and perimeter scorers. No, he isn’t nearly as good as driving as Rondo, but seriously who is as a point guard?

Machado fits into the Bulls' roster because of what he has already showed in college. Consistently moving the ball and then bringing it together with a step back or a drive that keeps the defense on their toes as Derrick Rose did.

With Rose likely out all season and the unknown factor of C.J. Watson it wouldn't be a bad choice to invest in a point guard that can take in minutes quickly like he did for Iona.

Machado isn't the best point guard available, but when it comes down to needs the Bulls need to express the lack of depth at point guard without Rose. Even with Watson healthy he is aging putting Chicago at a need for a young guard that can potentially be in a sixth man role.

At pick 29 it wouldn't be much of a reach, but you don't have a big a risk of losing him before the selection. So, if Machado one of the top available and the Bulls still see a need then watch for his name to be called, there's no doubt Chicago would consider the idea.

Collin Wilson is a sophomore at Barnesville High School in Ohio. Wilson has been a sports writer since June 2011 and has worked with Darin Ford at every stop he's been. You can read more about Collin on our Staff page.

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Written by Darin Ford | 04 June 2012

According to ProBasketballDraft.com the former UC Santa Barbara Gaucho, Orlando Johnson, is the the 29th best draft prospect in this years field. And ofPhoto from Bleacher Report course ... who has that pick? We do.

The 6'5" high scoring guard averaged double-digits all four years of his college career. (A career that started at Loyola Marymount before transferring after his freshman year.)

Orlando is one of those prospects that is NBA ready. His size, strength, length and skill set will take him to places unknown. The kid can really ball and is a steal -- much like Tony Wroten Jr. is -- at the No. 29 pick.

Orlando shot well over 45 percent from the field and 36 percent from three in his college days. However, Johnson did see some struggles from the charity stripe his senior year, only connecting on 4.1 out of every 5.9 free throws per game -- just 69.2%.

He's not quite Marcus Thornton but could see a career trend that's devilishly similar. Another case similar to his? Courtney Lee. (Which is probably the best comparison.) Both Lee and Johnson came from mid-major college programs that put the ball in his hands at all times. Lee, for those of you that remeber, was a rookie on the Orlando Magic when they reached the Eastern Conference Finals in '09. Johnson can be something similar to what Lee was to any playoff contender. Defensively he'll have to continue to develop, but offensively, Johnson is ready for the league.

UCSB was not only able to rely on Johnson to be a scorer but a rebounder as well, he grabbed a little under six boards a game.

Putting up the numbers that he put up, it's surprising that he never really got on the national radar. (Something that Courtney Lee, Steph Curry and Jimmer Fredette all got.) Maybe UCSB's struggle to outshine a much better Long Beach State team in their league, the Big West, hindered the team's ability to really reach that national stage.

In the NBA, Orlando Johnson could be 20 points plus a night guy, given he's in the right offense with the right coach. That's obviously not as a rookie. Probably not even before his third year. If he continues to work at it he could be a really nice player and tremendous pick-up for the Bulls.

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Written by Darin Ford | 03 June 2012

Tony Wroten Jr. is one of the most interesting players in the 2012 NBA Draft without a doubt.

The 6'5" 205lb. combo guard can flat out score. He's long, very athletic and has a tremendous amount of upside. But, with every player packed with upside, your bound to come across some lows in his game. Tony may be a good scorer, but he needs some work on his jumper and needs to pay a little more attention to his shot selection.

Tony Spent last season -- his only season in college -- at the University of Washington. His team won the Pac-12 regular season championship but failed to close it out in the conference tournament. Wroten Jr. averaged a little over 16 points per contest in '11-'12. He also compiled over 3.6 assists and 5 rebounds per game proving his versatility and overall package.

ESPN's Chad Ford notes that Wroten Jr. could be a great passer down the road due to his size and vision. Rondo? No, not quite. However, I think with the right tutelage, he could be close.

Now like I said when it comes to guys with lots of upside, they're all over the board with their games. Well, Tony is all over all NBA draft boards. ESPN has him slotted at No. 23 whereas NBADraft.net along with several other services alike pinned Wroten Jr. somewhere around the 33rd overall selection, maybe even deeper.

Wroten Jr.'s size is uncanny for his position and that needs to be noted. He's bigger than Gilbert Arenas and we all know how much success he had in his career -- well, the early part of it at least.

In reality, Wroten Jr. falling to Chicago at No. 29 is not likely, but it would be a steal for the Bulls.

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Written by Darin Ford | 02 June 2012

As of now, Tyshawn Taylor is projected as a late first to mid second-round pick. If the draft was today, I would slot him somewhere between the 32nd and 36th pick. But I think that NBA GMs will fall in love with his skill set, play style and body type. Tyshawn's length and strength will enable him to play the point guard position in the NBA very well.

The 6'3" 215lb. combo guard from Kansas has been through a ton. He doesn't neccesarily have "baggage" but the kid  has been through a lot of trial and error. He is a proven winner and has won a lot during his four years at KU under head coach Bill Self. 

Bill Self regards highly of Tyshawn, "I've always liked Ty. I've always loved him as a player. No question. And I have always liked him as a guy. If I was in college I would want to hang with Ty. He's a cool kid, I think. 

"I think Ty's been a guy that has gotten in his own way some. He has put himself in a position for a large part of his career where he probably didn't know that I liked him as much as I do. And now without question I think he knows that I really like him. I really like this kid. I think he's been about as big a treat to coach as anybody I've ever had. And I've always been fond of guys that have to go through some stuff to get where they eventually end up and he's had to go through some stuff. 

"But he's been a treat to be around. He's emerged as one of the better leaders we have had since I've been here."
Tyshawn needs to continue to work on his three point jump shot in order to be a really tough guard for defenders. His balance in the lane as he goes to finish s terrific  and always seems very court savvy. Much like Doron Lamb -- our topic of conversation yesterday -- Tyshawn is very smooth and never seems to rushed.

Tyshawn was really the same player his first three years at Kansas. A solid wing with a lot of ups and downs. His senior year, Tyshawn really figured it out and really improved as he was slotted over to the point guard position.

Tyshawn also has some success internationally. He was on the 2009 U-19 World Championships and led the team in scoring. USA was able to take the title back home when the won the whole thing.

If you ask me, there isn't a big difference in situations between his this year and to that of Reggie Jackson -- taken with the 23rd pick by the Oklahoma City Thunder last year -- and Norris Cole -- taken with the No. 28 overall pick, ended up with the Miami Heat after a slew of trades sent his draft rights all over the place. Both Cole and Jackson were strong and athletic combo guards that saw a lot of success in their college career. The way Cole has made an impact on a good championship caliber Heat team makes me think that Taylor can do the same thing for any team, especially the Bulls.

Obviously the hanging question all off-season and during the season this upcoming year will be whether or not 2011's Most Valuable Player, Derrick Rose, will be in uniform or not. The Bulls could certainly need more help at the two guard position, -- as I've noted before -- but, without Derrick Rose they will need another true combo guard to help out whoever the starter may be. In Tyshawn's case, I think he could contend with C.J Watson for it if the depth chart stands as is. Clearly it's C.J.'s starting job if D-Rose doesn't return but Tyshawn would get a solid amount of minutes for sure.

Now look, I know for sure I'm going to baffle some readers right now but, I'm prepared to say it ... Tyshawn Taylor could see the same career trend that current New York Knicks guard Jeremy Lin has seen so far.

The two are extremely similar in body size and touching shoulders with their play styles. I think that the better the team Tyshawn is on early in his career the better he will be.

Tyshawn played with over 6 current and future NBA players. Those being: Sherron Collins, Cole Aldrich, Marcus Morris, Markieff Morris and soon-to-be Thomas Robinson. Taylor and Robinson led KU to The Final Four this past season with a pretty depleted roster. KU lost to Kentucky in the championship game.

So to wrap-up, look for G Tyshawn Taylor to really climb up the rungs of the NBA Draft in the next couple of weeks. In all honesty, I think that Taylor would be one of the best fits for the Bulls with the No. 29 overall pick given D-Rose can't return until 2013-2014. If Tyshawn is available when GM Gar Forman has his turn to select someone, the Windy City fans aught to be pretty ecstatic.

Tyshawn can be a career 10pts, 3reb, and 4ast a night guy for a playoff team, no question. He's truly one of the most underrated players in this years draft. no comments