Chicago Bulls' Marquis Teague drives the ball upcourt against the Memphis Grizzlies in the first quarter of an NBA Summer League basketball game on Saturday, July 13, 2013, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)
Updated: December 3, 2013 12:56PM
When Tom Thibodeau started playing veteran point guard Mike James over second-year player Marquis Teague over the weekend in Cleveland, it was obvious that Teague was on the slide.
That’s why it was no surprise that the Bulls announced on Tuesday that Teague was assigned to the Iowa Energy of the NBA Development League (D-League).
The good news for the 2012 first-round pick [29th overall]? The move had more to do with development than punishment.
“Marquis is doing great,’’ general manager Gar Forman said. “We see an opportunity for him to get some significant time on the floor. We see it as short-lived.
“He’s still 20 years old, he’s still young. We like Marquis’ potential, but for his development there might be scenarios throughout the season where he gets playing time down there.’’
With the Bulls off until Thursday when they host Miami, and then only two more home games over a five-day stretch after that, this proved to be one of those scenarios.
The 6-foot-2 Teague had played in nine games so far this season, averaging 1.2 points and 0.8 assist per game in 8.9 minutes per game. He did see only six seconds in the triple-overtime loss to New Orleans Monday night, while James played just under 10 minutes.
As far as Thibodeau pulling Teague aside before the Cleveland game to let him know that James had jumped him in the rotation, Thibodeau said, “You’re always talking to your players, but you’re doing what’s best for your team. So that’s the way we deal with those things.’’
According to Forman, the Bulls have no plans for an additional body to be added to the roster at this time.