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Bulls use forward thinking to add depth to frontcourt

Johnson & Johnson will open camp with the Bulls: Stanley and Alize Johnson were added to the roster Monday.

The Bulls have signed former Raptors forward Stanley Johnson.
The Bulls have signed former Raptors forward Stanley Johnson.
Chris O’Meara/AP

The free-agent stockpile was running out of bodies at the forward spot once the Bulls lost out on the Paul Millsap sweepstakes last week.

On Monday, the organization had no choice but to sift through the remains.

A source confirmed that the Bulls got some much needed frontcourt depth by adding wing Stanley Johnson and power forward Alize Johnson.

Not only did they fill out the last two roster spots, but the signings give the team a chance to see if Johnson & Johnson can recapture some lost promise from previous seasons.

Stanley Johnson, who was the eighth overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft, might have the bigger upside, showing promise in his early days with the Pistons, before an inability to shoot from outside caught up with him.

Alize Johnson is another explosive leaper, and he will join former dunk-contest winners Zach LaVine and Derrick Jones Jr.

The reality for both, however, is playing time won’t be easy to come by if the Bulls stay healthy. The frontcourt lacks depth, but veteran DeMar DeRozan and second-year forward Patrick Williams will be firmly entrenched as starters.

Alize Johnson could factor in as a reserve big, but he’ll still have to beat out Tony Bradley and promising rookie Marko Simonovic. Bradley is a pure rim protector. Simonovic showed in Summer League that he can play the five or four, with an ability to stretch the floor.

The team also reportedly signed guard Matt Thomas to a non-guaranteed deal.