The Chicago Bulls are one of the most renowned franchises in NBA history, mainly thanks to the 6 NBA championships that Michael Jordan won with the team. Chicago is one of the franchises on the lips of most NBA fans, whether they are casuals or not. The Bulls dominated the 90s era, winning titles and playing some of the best basketball we have ever seen. At this moment, we might be seeing the best Bulls squad since the 90s. Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan have formed a nice duo on the court and are bringing excitement back to Chicago.
Of course, the Derrick Rose teams should have achieved more than they did. Rose became the youngest MVP ever in the 2011 season before injuries derailed what could have been a first-ballot Hall of Fame career. Rose had a great squad with the likes of Joakim Noah and Luol Deng by his side, but the point guard never recovered his superstar form after his ACL tear. Clearly, the Chicago Bulls have had a tremendous history with some all-time great talents playing for their franchise. But who are the greatest scorers to play for the Bulls?
We have collected the 10 greatest scorers in Bulls history, in PPG, to uncover which players had the most impact when they were with the team. With a minimum of two seasons played, some names on this list will be expected because their impact with the franchise was undeniably great.
10. Reggie Theus - 18.8 PPG
(6 Seasons, 1979-1984)
A 2-time All-Star with the Chicago Bulls, Reggie Theus was one of the most consistent scorers in the franchise’s history. The 6’7” shooting guard was selected with the No. 9 overall pick in the 1978 NBA Draft and finished runner-up in the Rookie of the Year race. A scorer who hardly attempted three-point shots, Theus averaged over 18 PPG over the next 4 seasons after his rookie season.
Theus was a consistent performer alongside future Hall of Famer Artis Gilmore and would go on to have a successful NBA career after his early years with the Bulls. The shooting guard was proficient from the field (47.7%) and accurate from the free-throw line (80.6%) which meant he was a deadly offensive weapon for the Bulls during the 1980s.
9. Artis Gilmore - 19.3 PPG
(7 Seasons, 1977-1982, 1988)
A 6-time NBA All-Star, Hall of Fame big man Artis Gilmore was a sensational scoring threat for the Chicago Bulls. After making 5 straight All-Star Teams in the ABA, Gilmore joined the Chicago Bulls in 1977. He averaged 18.6 PPG and 13.0 RPG that year but would make 4 All-Star Teams over the next 5 seasons with Chicago. A double-double machine as a 7’2” center, Gilmore was easily a Hall of Fame talent.
His ability to score in the paint meant his field-goal percentage was sky-high at 58.7%, and he was decent from the free-throw line at 71.2%. Gilmore later joined the San Antonio Spurs where he would make 2 more All-Star Teams, but his best years in the NBA came with the Chicago Bulls franchise. One of the most dominant big men ever, Gilmore’s consistency as a scorer places him among the 10 greatest Bulls’ scorers ever.
8. Derrick Rose - 19.7 PPG
(7 Seasons, 2009-2016)
One of the greatest what-if stories in NBA history, Derrick Rose was destined for greatness. The superstar offensive player had it all: speed, agility, explosiveness, clutch ability, and dominance as a ball-handler. After winning Rookie of the Year averaging 16.8 PPG and 6.3 APG, Rose was destined for greatness as he made 3 straight All-Star Teams. The point guard was exceptionally gifted as a scorer, using his explosiveness to get to the rim whenever he wanted.
Outside of Russell Westbrook, Derrick Rose was the most athletic point guard in NBA history. Leaping out the roof and rising over defenders, the point guard was unstoppable as he became the youngest MVP ever in 2011. The No. 1 overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft would have been higher on this list if he never sustained career-altering injuries that cut his prime too short, although he still cracks the list thanks to the first 4 years of his career with the Chicago Bulls.
7. Elton Brand - 20.1 PPG
(2 Seasons, 2000-2001)
Elton Brand is mainly remembered as being an All-Star big man with the Los Angeles Clippers, but he was drafted by the Chicago Bulls with the No. 1 pick in the 1999 NBA Draft. Brand was Rookie of the Year, averaging 20.1 PPG and 10.0 RPG with 1.6 BPG. The following season, Brand averaged 20.1 PPG and 10.1 RPG with 1.6 BPG. His size as a 6’8” and 275 lbs power forward meant he could use force and skill to get the ball in the basket and did it on a consistent basis whenever he wore the Bulls or Clippers jersey in his prime.
While Elton Brand never became an All-Star with the Bulls, he set himself up for a big paycheck from the Clippers as he made the All-Star Team in his third NBA season with Los Angeles. Of course, Brand would have his best season in 2006 by making an All-NBA Team and putting up 24.7 PPG and 10.0 RPG while making his second All-Star Team. But Elton’s first two years in the league was enough to place him among the best Bulls’ scorers ever.
6. Bob Boozer - 20.4 PPG
(3 Seasons, 1967-1969)
Bob Boozer is mainly remembered for winning Gold with the US Olympics Team in 1960 and later a role player for the 1971 championship Bucks team. But Boozer, like most players on this list, had the best individual years of his career as a member of the Chicago Bulls. Boozer averaged under 18.0 PPG for 6 straight years to start his career, and averaged at least 18.0 PPG and more the 3 years he played in Chicago.
Boozer averaged 18.0 PPG in year 1, 21.5 PPG in year two, and 21.7 PPG in year three. As a 6’8” power forward, the big man was proficient at being effective in the post but blossomed into a scoring threat with the Bulls. Bob Boozer also made his only All-Star Team in 1968 with the Bulls, the same season he averaged 21.5 PPG and 9.8 RPG.
5. Chet Walker - 20.6 PPG
(6 Seasons, 1970-1975)
The 6’6” small forward was a Hall of Famer due to his scoring track record, with his best years coming during the last 6 seasons of his career with the Chicago Bulls. Having made 3 All-Star Teams as a member with the Philadelphia 76ers, he would make 4 more All-Star Teams with the Bulls over his 6 years playing in Chicago. Chet Walker averaged 21.5 PPG, 22.0 PPG, 22.0 PPG, 19.9 PPG, 19.3 PPG, and 19.2 PPG over those 6 years.
Chet Walker was known for his speed and agility, using his physical gifts to put up solid scoring numbers over his career. Although he was best remembered for being the starting small forward for the 1960s 76ers, Walker had his best individual years with the Chicago Bulls. “Chet the Jet” was incredibly quick, and as a scorer, he was as effective as many other Bulls stars in the franchise’s history.
4. Bob Love - 21.3 PPG
(9 Seasons, 1969-1977)
Bob Love’s career was an interesting one to follow because it took the 6’8” power forward a few years to blossom into a great scorer. Love averaged under 8 PPG for 3 straight seasons before averaging 21.0 PPG in his 4th season with the Chicago Bulls. Playing all 82 games, Love began performing at an elite level and would make the All-Star Team for 3 straight seasons after that. Bob Love put up 25.2 PPG, 25.8 PPG, 23.1 PPG, 21.8 PPG, 22.0 PPG, and 19.1 PPG in each season until the 1977 season.
Bob Love had a proven track record of a scoring All-Star, and also made 3 All-Defensive Teams over his career with Chicago. Based on his scoring ability in the post, Love was an effective scorer who could also nail his free throws (80.5% for his career) and was incredibly consistent. The big man had his jersey (#10) retired, the second player ever to have his jersey retired by the Bulls at the time.
3. Jalen Rose - 21.4 PPG
(3 Seasons, 2002-2004)
A 6’8” small forward with natural passing ability, Jalen Rose was a great scorer over the 3 seasons he played with the Bulls. Rose was expected to become an elite NBA player coming out of the University of Michigan, and he had his best seasons as a member of the Chicago Bulls. After getting traded to the Bulls during the 2002 season, Rose averaged 23.8 PPG over the final 30 games of the year.
The following season, Rose averaged 22.1 PPG on 37.0% shooting from three and followed that up with averages of 13.3 PPG during the final 16 games of the 2004 season. Jalen Rose was very effective as the starter for the Bulls and did a great job putting the ball in the basket for a franchise that needed his offense. While Jalen never made an All-Star Team, he had his best seasons with the Bulls which is why he is 3rd on the list of their greatest scorers.
2. Zach LaVine - 24.6 PPG
(5 Seasons, 2018-2022)
Zach LaVine is proving to be an excellent pickup for the Chicago Bulls, and he is repaying them by playing like a superstar this season. As a 6’5” shooting guard, LaVine is a force on the offensive end thanks to his athleticism and shooting stroke. So far this season, the shooting guard is averaging 26.8 PPG on 40.3% from deep. In the clutch, LaVine is also performing at an elite level alongside his teammate DeMar DeRozan.
After blossoming from an elite dunker to an elite scorer, Zach has been a dominant force with Chicago. His 24.6 PPG average through 5 seasons so far is very impressive, especially since the young man is only 26 years old. Time will tell if LaVine can bring postseason success to the team with a ton of help around him this season, but his scoring numbers have been impressive regardless.
1. Michael Jordan - 31.5 PPG
(13 Seasons, 1985-1998) *DNP during 1994 (Retirement)
Unsurprisingly, Michael Jordan tops the list as the greatest scorer in Bulls history. In fact, MJ is the greatest scorer of all time because he did it at a level that will never be surpassed. His 30.1 career PPG average ranks 1st all-time, even ahead of Wilt Chamberlain who once averaged 50.4 PPG for a season. As dominant as Wilt was as a big man, he could not surpass what Jordan did as a scorer.
Michael was simply dominant, winning 10 scoring titles as a member of the Bulls. The shooting guard averaged 37.1 PPG, 35.0 PPG, 33.6 PPG, 32.6 PPG, 32.5 PPG, 31.5 PPG, 30.4 PPG, and 30.1 PPG to win 8 out of his 10 scoring titles, and he has 4 more seasons averaging over 26 PPG. Jordan did it from mid-range, at the rim, and from the stripe better than anyone else. Had the GOAT played today, his scoring numbers would have been even higher due to the presence of the three-point shot.
Most Points In Chicago Bulls History
Here are the ten players with the most total points in Chicago Bulls history:
1. Michael Jordan - 29,277
2. Scottie Pippen - 15,123
3. Bob Love - 12,623
4. Luol Deng - 10,286
5. Jerry Sloan - 10,233
6. Chet Walker - 9,788
7. Artis Gilmore - 9,288
8. Kirk Hinrich - 8,536
9. Reggie Theus - 8,279
10. Derrick Rose - 8,001