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The Chicago Bulls could have some significant changes coming their way this offseason as one of the team's top stars, Zach LaVine, has to decide on his future.

Meanwhile, the Bulls are also reportedly interested in a premier perimeter defender from the Philadelphia 76ers, according to a report from Sean Deveney of Heavy.com.

Per Deveney, the Bulls are interested in Sixers veteran Matisse Thybulle. That doesn't come as much of a surprise, considering Chicago's General Manager Marc Eversley was in Philadelphia's front office when the Sixers drafted Thybulle out of Washinton.

"The Sixers could look to get off Thybulle's contract to create some wiggle room under the luxury tax, which looms large over the team's offseason, and one team with known interest, according to league sources, is Chicago. Bulls GM Marc Eversley has had a fondness for Thybulle going back to early in his collegiate career at Washington, and was instrumental in pushing the Sixers to acquire him in the 2019 draft. A deal would likely require a third team if Philadelphia's goal is to save money under the tax, but the Bulls would be a strong suitor if Thybulle is available."

When the Sixers drafted Thybulle in 2019, their interest in the defensive standout was the worst-kept secret around the league. It wasn't a matter of if the Sixers drafted Thybulle; it was just a matter of when.

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And when the Boston Celtics were on the board with the 20th overall pick in 2019, the Sixers moved up to get him via trade, just as they promised. From the start of Thybulle's NBA career, he was in the Sixers' rotation as his defensive value alone made him valuable to a defensive-minded 76ers team.

Unfortunately, Thybulle's slow offensive growth over the last two seasons has made it difficult to find him a steady role, especially in the playoffs.

Throughout the 2021-2022 NBA season, the Sixers kept their faith in Thybulle as they reportedly refused to trade him away in the blockbuster deal with the Brooklyn Nets to land James Harden. 

After the trade got done without Thybulle involved, Sixers President of Basketball Operations Daryl Morey noted that Thybulle was an essential piece to the Sixers. A lot has changed since that February trade, but it's unclear if the Sixers view Thybulle any differently after an underwhelming playoff performance.

Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him for live updates on Twitter: @JGrasso_.


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