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My take: Artūras Karnišovas ties second in EOY

My take: Artūras Karnišovas ties second in EOY
By Ryan Taylor • Issue #5 • View online
Chicago Bulls Vice President of Operations, Artūras Karnišovas, finished second in the NBA’s Executive of the Year Award, tied with Cleveland Cavaliers executive Koby Altman.
Here’s a look at how the voting went.

Artūras Karnišovas finished with one first place vote, six second place votes, and four third place votes to equate 27 total points.
Artūras Karnišovas finished with one first place vote, six second place votes, and four third place votes to equate 27 total points.
Memphis’s general manager, Zach Kleiman, won by a landslide. Kleiman uprooted the Grizzlies since his start in 2015. His most recent flip of the script came last summer by trading Jonas Valanciunas to New Orleans Pelicans for Steven Adams, Eric Bledsoe and two future first-round picks, one of which resulted in Zaire Williams.
Kleiman was also responsible for drafting Jaren Jackson Jr. and Ja Morant in back-to-back drafts. The most notable factoid proven the depth of the Grizzlies’ roster is their 20-2 record this past regular season without Morant.
As for Karnišovas’s voting partner, Altman, he completely restructured the Cavaliers after the LeBron/Irving era. Altman just signed an extension last January through the 2027-28 season.
Altman’s most significant success this past season was selling Ricky Rubio to the Indiana Pacers for Caris LeVert, bringing in another prolific scorer to pair with Darius Garland, Jarrett Allen, and Evan Mobley, and Lauri Markkanen – who Altman acquired before the season started.
What about Karnišovas?
The league recognized Karnišovas’s success with the Bulls by placing him second in the voting. But, Bulls fans could make the argument that he deserved more votes.
Karnišovas was busy this summer.
He overhauled the roster with DeMar DeRozan, Lonzo Ball, Alex Caruso (on MLE), and drafted Ayo Dosunmu in the second round of the previous draft.
Some underrated moves by Karnišovas since the start of his tenure two years ago include, in my opinion, the hiring of Billy Donovan as head coach and Marc Eversley as general manager.
Karnišovas jumped at the opportunity to hire Donovan once he parted ways with the Oklahoma City Thunder. Since, Donovan has implemented a high-level team with the pieces he’s been given, simultaneously delivering the Bulls their first playoff berth since 2017.
As for the latter, Eversley is a rising star amongst NBA executives. The Portland Trail Blazers had interest in making him their President of Ops earlier in the season.
Luckily, Eversley stayed with us.
He was an invaluable factor in bringing in DeRozan from free agency. Eversley met DeRozan and his agent in Los Angeles to pitch the Bulls’ vision to him while the Lakers and Clippers had him on the fringe of playing for one of them closest to his hometown – Compton.
Karnišovas was behind all of it.
Karnišovas’s Drawbacks
Karnišovas put the Bulls in deep playoff conversations in a short amount of time. But, his management moves received backlash too.
The argument against his winning of EOY starts with the Bulls’ infringement upon the NBA’s tampering rules back in the summer when the Bulls signed Ball prematurely.
(Obviously, this happens all the time and sadly Karnišovas got caught. Still, it doesn’t help his case.)
The Bulls also failed to meet early expectations of making a deep run into the playoffs. They lost in the first round to the Milwaukee Bucks in an embarrassing fashion, only taking one game in the series.
The team dropped the ball in the regular season, once holding the best record in the Eastern Conference for most of the winter until they dropped to sixth place by the end.
Nevertheless, Karnišovas & Co. will not go underlooked for the work they did this season. They turned a team that was once one of five teams that weren’t invited to the NBA bubble two years ago into one that competed with the defending champs in the playoffs this past season.
There’s a lot to be proud and excited about from last season that the Bulls should keep their focus on. Karnišovas’s second-place finish is a simple reminder that the Bulls are on the right track.
K.C. Johnson
Following a busy offseason in which the Bulls acquired DeMar DeRozan, Lonzo Ball, Alex Caruso, Artūras Karnišovas tied for 2nd in Executive of the Year voting conducted by his peers

Jerry Krause (twice) & Gar Forman are previous winners

For @NBCSChicago:
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Ryan Taylor

Hello! This issue focuses on Chicago Bulls news, film analysis, columns, and rumors. On an as-need publication basis, this newsletter will provide Chicago Bulls fans with interesting reads about their favorite NBA team.

As for myself, Ryan Taylor, I am a graduating senior from DePaul University studying journalism. I have worked several positions in sports writing with, Fansided, and Sports Mockery. I have reporting experience with The DePaulia too.

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