NBA Power Rankings: Buying the Mavs in the West; Clippers finally turning corner?

Are the Dallas Mavericks for real and have the LA Clippers finally turned the corner?

Los Angeles Lakers v Dallas Mavericks
Los Angeles Lakers v Dallas Mavericks / Tim Heitman/GettyImages
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23. Chicago Bulls

Occasionally, there's this phenomenon in the NBA that I like to call false hope. It occurs when something unexpected happens that offers a team or fan base hope that doesn't have much to stand on. Or, in other words, hope that is going to eventually fall through. It's not real. And it's more of a random occurrence than not. The real mistake takes place when teams act in response to this false hope.

Frankly, I'm afraid that's exactly what's about to happen with the Chicago Bulls. For roughly the past two weeks, the Bulls have been playing without Zach LaVine in the lineup. He's been out with an injury. In that span, Chicago has somehow played bette without him. They're 5-2 in those games.

The Bulls are not better without LaVine. But I wouldn't be surprised if this front office believes that if they replace LaVine with another talent, perhaps they could compete for a playoff spot. That's not happening. I'm afraid that instead of Chicago leaning into a complete rebuild, they're going to trick themselves into thinking that they just need a retooling.