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According to CSN Chicago's Aggrey Sam, Bulls first round pick Marquis Teague is one of the players on Chicago's Las Vegas summer league team. Other members include Leon Powe, Jimmy Butler and Illinois alum Demetri McCamey.
Bulls' Vegas summer-league roster includes: Jimmy Butler, Marquis Teague, Leon Powe, Demetri McCamey, Ramone Moore, Malcolm Thomas...— Aggrey Sam (@CSNBullsInsider) July 10, 2012
According to Sam, the team will practice in Chicago before heading to Las Vegas. Their first game is on July 17.
The Chicago Bulls "Bench Mob" that proved instrumental in the team's success in 2010-11 and 2011-12 is saying its final goodbyes. According to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune, the Bulls have told G-F Ronnie Brewer they will not exercise his option for the 2012-13 NBA Season:
Bulls have also now informed Ronnie Brewer that his $4.37 million option won't be picked up for 2012-13.— K.C Johnson (@KCJHoop) July 10, 2012
Brewer played in all 66 games for the Bulls in 2011-12, logging an average of 24.8 minutes per game while scoring 6.9 points per outing. The 27-year-old guard played mostly as a starter before coming to Bulls, and with PG Derrick Rose missing much of the Bulls 2011-12 season, Brewer returned to starting capacity, collecting 43 starts with an 11.69 player efficiency rating.
K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune is reporting the Chicago Bulls are poised to break apart one of the league's top benches on Tuesday. The affectionately named "Bench Mob" appears to be on the verge of saying goodbye to several of its key members -- G-F Ronnie Brewer, SG C.J. Watson and SG Kyle Korver. Additionally, C Omer Asik is expected to sign the Houston Rockets' $24 million offer sheet on Wednesday.
All told, the Bulls are in a financial pinch:
Once [Kirk Hinrich] is signed, the Bulls will have roughly $67.3 million of committed salaries for nine players next season. The projected luxury tax line is $70.3 million, which the Bulls are almost certain to exceed for the first time in franchise history.
The Bulls hope to make up the gap in production with rookie PG Marquis Teague and second-year SG Jimmy Butler, but neither have received a true test at the NBA level.
It is no secret that Chicago Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf has no desire to go past the NBA's luxury tax line. That, in turn, has put pressure on Chicago's front office to keep the team at the top of the Eastern Conference while staying under a salary cap number that many of its competitors may blow past. (Derrick Rose's injury, of course, hasn't helped matters.) It has long been discussed that one remedy for Chicago's predicament would be to use the amnesty provision on power forward Carlos Boozer.
During a radio interview on Monday, free agent John Lucas III talked a bit about the interest he has received from other teams, including the Miami Heat. He also noted the addition of Kirk Hinrich to the Bulls, though he did not say specifically how that might affect his willingness to re-sign with Chicago.
"With everything that's going on now and I've heard [the Bulls] re-signed Kirk, which is a good move for them, so it kind of puts a little bit ... I'll sit down with my team and see what happens on that end," Lucas said. "(Miami) is a team that's reaching out to contact me, showing interest. It's coming from management. It's something going back and forth with my agent and other teams, too. They're not the only team. We have a couple other teams, too.
"It's just basically talking and seeing what would be the best fit."
The Chicago Bulls All-Star PF Luol Deng may be going against many fans' wishes this offseason, but he has little doubt he is making the right choice. Deng is foregoing offseason surgery on his injured wrist so that he can participate in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.
According to Deng, his decision to delay the surgery was not only for the Olympics, but the better of the Bulls:
"My whole thing is, when I had the wrist injury I really didn't want to do the surgery because I felt we had the team -- and I still think we did -- to win it all," Deng said. "Unfortunately, things just didn't go right. We had a lot of injuries throughout the season. When I had my injury I told the Bulls I was going to hold off from surgery because I felt like we had a chance to win but also that I still wanted to play in the Olympics."
And for Deng, playing in the Olympics was the only way he pay back England, the nation that gave his family asylum when they fled Sudan, without diverting from his charity work from Sudan -- making the Olympics a one-of-a-kind opportunity for Deng:
"Much as I wanted to please Chicago and Chicago Bulls fans, I just hope they understand if I don't play in these Olympics, it will haunt me for the rest of my life. Giving something back is something that comes from my family."
The Chicago Bulls agreed to terms with guard Kirk Hinrich on Sunday. SB Nation Chicago's Ricky O'Donnell thinks if the team was more creative and willing to spend the millions they rake in, the Bulls could be looking at a much bigger upgrade.
ESPN's Brian Windhorst is reporting that the Miami Heat are interested in free agent point guard John Lucas III, who spent the 2011-12 season with the Chicago Bulls.
Heat interested in free agent PG John Lucas III, sources tell ESPN. Story will be posted soon.— Brian Windhorst (@WindhorstESPN) July 9, 2012
Lucas appeared in 49 regular season games for the Bulls last season, primarily as a reserve; he averaged 7.5 points, 2.2 assists and 1.6 rebounds per contest. Lucas has spent all or parts of four seasons in the NBA -- two with the Bulls and two with the Houston Rockets.
It appears as if Dwight Howard is getting closer to finally joining the Brooklyn Nets. The Nets and Orlando Magic have long been searching for a third team to help a trade go through, and they may have found a partner in the Cleveland Cavaliers. Cleveland would be willing to take on power forward Kris Humphries, but is currently holding out for a draft pick or two to sweeten the deal.
The Howard situation is far from the only thing going on in NBA free agency:
The Chicago Bulls reached a verbal agreement this morning with guard Kirk Hinrich, who spent his first seven seasons in Chicago after being selected with the seventh pick in the famed 2003 NBA Draft. Hinrich will man the point with superstar Derrick Rose sidelined for the majority of the upcoming season as he recovers from a torn ACL. It is believed Hinrich will sign for a mini mid-level exception, which will likely work out to a two-year, $6 million deal.
The Bulls clearly targeted Hinrich for a while, so while the move doesn't exactly thrill me, let's hope Gar Forman and John Paxson are smarter than your average basketball blogger. Coach Tom Thibodeau, who spent the day watching Taj Gibson workout with the U.S. Select Team, sounds satisfied by the addition of Hinrich.
Thibs on Hinrich "He's an experienced guy. Played very well for all teams that he's been with ..brings a lot in terms of veteran experience"— Nick Friedell (@ESPNChiBulls) July 8, 2012
The Chicago Bulls are trying to trade point guard C.J. Watson now that they've decided not to exercise his option for next season, according to Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld. If they don't trade him, they'll be forced to waive him on July 10, potentially paving his path to unrestricted free agency.
Presumably, the Bulls would prefer to finalize a trade and get something in return for the 28-year-old, but they may be forced to simply place him on waivers next Tuesday. If nobody chooses to claim his contract, which includes $3.2 million for next season, he'll have the freedom to choose where he plays next year.
The Bulls could have simply brought back Watson for next season, but they agreed to a two-year deal with guard Kirk Hinrich this weekend instead. It appears that he'll take Watson's role as back-up point guard once Derrick Rose is healthy.
The Chicago Bulls still have unrestricted free agents Michael Redd and Gerald Green on their radar even after reportedly signing Kirk Hinrich this weekend, as Mike McGraw of the Daily Herald reports. Assuming that the Bulls sign Hinrich to the mini mid level exception, they'll be hamstrung financially from adding to their roster from here, though:
If Hinrich got mini mid-level, then Bulls can only sign players to minimum salaries or make trades. Michael Redd & Gerald Green on radar.— Mike McGraw (@McGrawDHBulls) July 8, 2012
Even after adding Hinrich, the Bulls could still presumably use some help on the wings. It's unclear whether they'll bring back Kyle Korver and/or Ronnie Brewer for next season, but someone like Redd or Green would presumably qualify as a replacement.
Like Korver, Redd has made his name in the NBA with lights-out shooting, but the 32-year-old has played in just 112 games over the past four years due to a variety of injuries. The Bulls presumably hope that he can re-capture some of his old magic; before the injuries, Redd averaged 24.3 points per game over a four-year span as the Milwaukee Bucks' star player.
Green has had a much different story, looking like one of the league's biggest busts before emerging with the New Jersey Nets last season. After being out of the NBA for two years, Green played in 31 games for the Nets, averaging 12.9 points per game and 3.5 rebounds per game. At the age of 26, there's still some intriguing upside here.
The shooting guard postion has been a weakness of the Chicago Bulls for years, and the team has long been linked in rumors to Houston Rockets guard Courtney Lee. The sharpshooter has been traded twice in his career, but now he's a free agent and is being coveted by various teams around the league. The Bulls are included in that group, although the team likely will not have enough money under the luxury tax to sign Lee outright.
The Chicago Bulls front office has plenty of options as it tries to bolster its roster while still remaining under the luxury tax line, and the signing of free agent guard Kirk Hinrich to a reported two-year contract worth $6 million may have illuminated a bit of what they plan on doing. According to ESPN basketball guru John Hollinger, Chicago's use of its midlevel exception on Hinrich will likely allow them to keep Kyle Korver and potentially even match the offer sheet that Omer Asik signed with the Houston Rockets.
Bulls apparently using taxpayer MLE on Hinrich, via @KCJHoop report, which is sign they likely keep Korver and may even match Asik.— John Hollinger (@johnhollinger) July 8, 2012
Kirk Hinrich has verbally agreed to sign with Bulls. Terms not yet finalized. Story up soon at ChicagoTribune.com.— K.C Johnson (@KCJHoop) July 8, 2012
The Chicago Bulls -- dealing with not only the injury absence of PG Derrick Rose -- appear poised to lose a piece of the depth as the Houston Rockets have offered C Omer Asik a rich, $25 million contract. Though many expect the Bulls to allow Asik to leave, one member of the Bulls bench -- PF Taj Gibson -- would be loathe to see the 26-year-old center move to Texas:
"Of course," Gibson said. "I'd like to have our whole team come back. But in this reality, it's tough in the NBA. Guys are making moves every day. You look on your (Twitter) timeline, you look on Twitter, you look on the Internet, there's guys making moves every day and it's scary. You know that one day you're not going to be with the same guy that was on your team last year like it was before."
Gibson also praised Bulls free agency target PG Kirk Hinrich, saying the veteran guard helped Gibson develop as a rookie.
One casualty of Chicago Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf's reluctance to pay the NBA's luxury tax may be sharpshooting forward Kyle Korver, whose team option for $5 million is in danger of not being picked up by Chicago's front office. If Korver is indeed let go by the Bulls, he would almost certainly be sought by a host of NBA teams looking to acquire one of the top three point shooters in the NBA.
Free agent guard Kirk Hinrich has been a rumored target of the Chicago Bulls for much of this year's free agency period. But if the Bulls are going to sign him, it will likely be because Hinrich, who spent the first seven years of his career in Chicago, gave the franchise a discount, or because the Bulls offered a slightly longer contract than their competitors with maybe more guaranteed money.
The Chicago Bulls have seen much of their main competition in the Eastern Conference make moves to improve their teams, while they themselves have remained rather quiet, contemplating how to best manage their very minimal cap space. The Bulls are unlikely to make a splash, and the types of players the team is likely to target are those that will merely help fill out the rotation.
The greatest three-point shooter of all-time is set to the join the NBA's reigning champions. Shooting guard Ray Allen turned down twice as much money from the Boston Celtics to play for the team that defeated them in last season's Eastern Conference finals, the Miami Heat. Allen's decision to leave Boston was apparently fueled by a deteriorating relationship with point guard Rajon Rondo, as well as the heavy trade speculation he endured over the last two seasons.
Allen's presence on Miami is certainly terrifying for the rest of the league. While LeBron James starred throughout the postseason for the Heat, it was the deadly three-point shooting of his teammates that made Miami such a force last season. Allen figures to step right in after signing for the mini mid-level exception, worth $3 million per season.
The Heat likely aren't done adding veteran talent, either.
The NBA's rich has gotten richer. Free agent shooting guard Ray Allen has spurned a contract offer to return to the Boston Celtics and chosen to join the defending NBA champion Miami Heat. Contract details have not yet been released, but it's widely believed that the Heat offered Allen the "mini-mid level" exception, which is worth $3 million a year.
As is fitting for 2012, the news was first broken on Twitter by Heat owner Mickey Arison.
Its 2:30am in London and I was just woken up with great news.Welcome to the family #20!!— Micky Arison (@MickyArison) July 7, 2012
It has been said that Allen has been holding a grudge against the Boston front office over various incidents that occurred last season, including his benching in favor of Avery Bradley and nearly being traded to the Memphis Grizzlies. Yahoo's Adrian Wojnarowski had sources on Friday night that at least confirmed the latter.
According to Chris Tomasson of FOX Sports, the Chicago Bulls and Phoenix Suns are pursuing free agent SG Michael Redd. Tomasson reports that both teams, though interested in Redd, are waiting for the right circumstances before they make a move:
Phoenix and Chicago are the 2 teams most heavily in the mix for free-agent shooting guard Michael Redd. Suns, who had Redd last season, are waiting to see if Eric Gordon offer sheet gets matched by New Orleans. Bulls are waiting to see what they might due with the July 10 deadlines to guarantee contracts of Kyle Korver, Ronnie Brewer and C.J. Watson.
The 32-year-old guard played 11 season with the Milwaukee Bucks before signing with the Suns in 2011. In the 2011-12 NBA season, Redd appeared in 51 games, averaging 15.1 minutes with a 13.98 player efficiency rating (league average is 15.00).
Another free agent target of the Chicago Bulls is off the market. Shooting guard Brandon Roy is ending his one-year retirement to play for the Minnesota Timberwolves on a two-year, $10.5 million deal. The second season of the deal is not guaranteed, meaning Roy will have to play to get his money. Considering the degenerative condition of his knees, that's far from assured. Still, the Timberwolves have a big need for swingmen, and taking a chance on Roy seems like a worthwhile measured risk. If Minnesota has its way, they'll be adding another upgrade on the wing, too.
The Timberwolves have agreed to a four-year, $45 million offer sheet with Portland Trail Blazers small forward Nic Batum. The 23-year old Frenchman averaged 13.9 points and 4.6 rebounds in Portland last season while posting a PER of 17.32.
Here are some other news and notes around the NBA:
Free agent shooting guard Brandon Roy has agreed to sign a two-year deal with the Minnesota Timberwolves, as Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld reports. Roy retired last year due to the condition of his knees, but he recently announced his desire to return to the NBA after his health improved.
According to NBA.com's David Aldridge, the deal is worth $10.4 million, a pretty significant investment considering what he's been through. A year ago, Roy retired because his health had deteriorated so badly, but a few years ago he was one of the NBA's best players.
The move also removes a key option from the market for the Chicago Bulls, who had previously been considered one of the suitors for Roy's services. The Bulls could use someone with upside as a scorer and playmaker like Roy, but he's apparently decided to go play with Kevin Love and Ricky Rubio in Minnesota.
NBA Analyst Bomani Jones examined the recent Houston Rockets offer to sign C Omer Asik to a 3-year, $25 million contract. The unusual max contract offer to a player who has started only two NBA games appears to be the emblematic backlash from the new collective bargaining agreement, argues Jones:
According to Jones, the Asik offer does not fit the apparent talent level the Rockets are trying to hire:
[Jrue Holiday] averaged 13.5 points per game. Asik average 14.5 -- minutes. If [Asik] is so damn good, why was he getting 15 minutes a game while Carlos Boozer was getting 30?
Jones also argues the offer represents an unusual diversion of funds:
This is the problem with the NBA. These executives, who put us through a lockout that was supposed to stop contracts like Asik's from happening, can't help themselves. Since they can't blow their cash on a really good player, they burn it on a regular dude.
The Bulls will have a chance to respond to Asik's offer, but given their tight financial standings and the limited productivity of Asik (who had only a 13.47 player efficiency rating in 2011-12), the Bulls may not be able to keep the 26-year-old center.
The latest news on the Chicago Bulls pursuit of free agent PG Kirk Hinrich may indicate the suitors have multiplied for the 32-year-old guard. According to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune, Hinrich now has a total of eight teams pursuing his services:
Hinrich played seven seasons with the Chicago Bulls from 2003 to 2010. Over the last two seasons, he has split time with the Washington Wizards and the Atlanta Hawks, both as a starter and coming off the bench. Hinrich averaged only 9.2 points and 3.8 assists per 36 minutes in the 2011-12 season, leading to a career-low player efficiency rating of 9.18 (with 15.0 being league average).
Just when it appeared Independence Day wouldn't produce much major NBA news, a blockbuster deal involving a two-time MVP was consummated. The Phoenix Suns will send 38-year old point guard Steve Nash to the Los Angeles Lakers for two first round picks, two second round picks and $3 million. Nash, who was an unrestricted free agent, discussed the move with Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant prior to agreeing to the deal. Nash will earn $25 million over three years in a new contract from the Lakers.
Here's the lowdown on the rest of Wednesday's free agency action in the NBA:
The Phoenix Suns and Los Angeles Lakers have agreed to a sign-and-trade deal that will send point guard Steve Nash to L.A. in exchange for a series of draft picks, according to John Gambadoro of 620 KTAR in Phoenix. The deal has since been confirmed by other sources, including Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports.
It's unclear what picks are exactly being given up by L.A. at this point, but the Lakers now have one of the league's best point guards despite Nash's advancing age. With a roster that already includes star-level players in Kobe Bryant, Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol, this move seriously boosts the Lakers' odds of competing for the title next year.
It had previously been reported that the New York Knicks were emerging as the top suitor for Nash, but it appears that the Suns wanted to send him somewhere that would allow him to stay closer to his family. The deal also removes another option from the market for teams like the Chicago Bulls that are seeking additional firepower.
While reports have the New York Knicks getting closer to a sign-and-trade that will land point guard Steve Nash in NYC, the Dallas Mavericks and Toronto Raptors haven't given up on their respective pursuits yet, as Marc Stein of ESPN reports.
Beyond any sign-and-trade talks, Mavericks remain in talks w/Steve Nash as well, sources say. I'm told Raps aren't conceding yet, either— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 4, 2012
Current reports have the Knicks and Suns nearing a sign-and-trade that would send Nash, signed for three years at $25 million, to New York for a package centered on guard Iman Shumpert. It's unclear how much the Mavericks are offering Nash at this point, but the Raptors have reportedly offered $36 million over three years.
While we know that the Houston Rockets are going to offer free agent center Omer Asik a back-loaded three-year deal once free agency begins, the exact figures within the offer won't be determined until the salary cap is set on July 10, as K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reports.
Johnson also notes that the Bulls could look into possible sign-and-trade scenarios regarding Asik and Houston before that date, which would allow Chicago to recoup some value from the departing center while giving the Rockets a guarantee that Asik would in fact be going to Houston.
On July 11, the Bulls will have the option of matching whatever offer Houston makes to Asik within three days, or Chicago will see their back-up center walk without receiving any compensation. As Johnson notes, the option of sending Asik to Houston is gone if they match the offer sheet, among other limitations:
According to the new collective bargaining agreement, if they match and retain Asik, 'they cannot trade him without his consent for one year and cannot trade him at all to the team that signed him to an offer sheet. They also can't trade the player in a sign-and-trade transaction (to another team).'
Essentially, whatever happens over the next week will likely determine Asik's role in the Bulls' organization for a pretty long time.
After a disappointing 2011-2012 campaign, the Chicago Bulls are reportedly considering a wide variety of actions in order to get the team back into the championship conversation. That's had them busy in free agency, with K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reporting that the team has reached out to guard Chauncey Billups:
The Bulls have cast an extremely wide net in free agency, even making perfunctory calls to the camps of veterans like Chauncey Billups, who would have little interest in signing for any of the exceptions or minimums the Bulls are willing to offer.
Considering that Billups has made at least $10 million or more annually in every season since 2007, it's understandable that he wouldn't be willing to take such a massive pay cut. Last season, he appeared in only 20 games, averaging 15.0 PPG and 4.0 APG while shooting just 36 percent from the field.
While they're reluctant, the New York Knicks are willing to give up shooting guard Iman Shumpert in order to bring Steve Nash to the Big Apple in a sign-and-trade, as Marc Stein of ESPN reports. The Phoenix Suns have made Shumpert, a native of Oak Park, their primary focus in talks with the Knicks regarding the former MVP.
According to Stein's sources, significant progress has been made in negotiations even though a deal hasn't been completed yet. The Knicks have been hesitant to include Shumpert in their offers to Phoenix for Nash, but they're set on landing the point guard at this point so they're backing off that demand.
If a deal is ultimately completed, Nash will end up going to New York on a three-year contract worth roughly $25 million, with the Suns receiving Shumpert and a series of cap-friendly filler contracts like Toney Douglas, Josh Harrellson and Jerome Jordan.
In the past, the Chicago Bulls had reportedly shown interest in Nash, but that possibility seems to be incredibly unlikely at this point. The Raptors have already been aggressive in pursuing the Canadian's services, while the Knicks only appear to be stepping up their efforts.
Only one Chicago Bulls player will ignore an injury in order to compete in the 2012 Olympics. Despite continued protests of the team's front office, Luol Deng will play for Great Britain's national team; Joakim Noah, on the other hand, will not join the French in London. Noah, who severely sprained his ankle in the Bulls' first round playoff loss to the Philadelphia Sixers, will not be healthy enough to participate in the Olympics.
Joakim Noah out of Olympics for France. First reported by L'Equipe in France. Severely sprained left ankle still not ready.— K.C Johnson (@KCJHoop) July 4, 2012
Chicago Bulls fans might not want to pay too much attention to what's going on in Brooklyn right now. While both the Bulls and Nets are quite obviously considered major market teams, only one is acting like it.
While the Bulls brace themselves to decline several one-year team options on bench stalwarts C.J. Watson, Ronnie Brewer and Kyle Korver, the Nets continue to take on salary and now look to be in position to develop into one of the Eastern Conference's best teams.
Brooklyn traded for productive yet wildly overpaid shooting guard Joe Johnson on Monday. On Tuesday, Brooklyn re-upped point guard Deron Williams to a max contract that will pay the former Illinois Fighting Illini star close to $100 million for five years. Williams chose to remain in Brooklyn over a 4-year max deal from the Dallas Mavericks.
Brooklyn also re-signed Gerald Wallace to a four-year, $40 million deal and added stretch power forward Mirza Teletovic from Bosnia.
The Nets aren't the only team making moves.
Citing an anonymous source, ESPN is reporting that the Cleveland Cavaliers have interest in free agent Brandon Roy. The Chicago Bulls are also interested in the former Portland guard, who is trying to make a comeback after retiring in 2011.
The Cavs have not yet set up a visit with Roy, said the person who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the sides are only in preliminary discussions. Roy, a three-time All-Star, announced his retirement last season after five seasons with Portland because of chronic knee problems. After sitting out the lockout-condensed season, Roy wants to try and resume his once promising NBA career.
The Bulls have plenty of time to decide if they'll be matching the Houston Rockets' three-year, $25 million offer sheet to restricted free agent Omer Asik, and the team is still keeping their intentions mum. The offer sheet includes what's been deemed a "poison pill" by the Tribune's K.C. Johnson, a max-level salary to the center in the final year of the contract that would pay the Bulls' reserve over $14 million in the 2014-2015 season.
A recent report from Johnson doesn't have the Bulls tipping their hand, but does include one interesting nugget: coach Tom Thibodeau flew out to Los Angeles to meet with Asik last weekend, and the Bulls apparently made the center a four-year contract offer. Johnson doesn't say how much money Chicago offered, but does say "it didn't match the Rockets' annual salary of $8.3 million."
The offer sheet will become official on July 11, when Chicago will have three days to match. It appears most following the Bulls would prefer for Chicago to let the center walk.
Bulls assistant coach Rick Brunson has accepted a position on new Bobcats coach Mike Dunlap's staff in Charlotte.— K.C Johnson (@KCJHoop) July 3, 2012
Brunson was hired by the Bulls in September of 2010; prior to that, he'd worked in the college ranks. Brunson also spent time with the Bulls during his playing career, appearing in 54 games with the team over the course of the 2002-03 and 2003-04 seasons.
Details regarding the money involved in his agreement with the Bobcats have not been released.
According to a report from Ramona Shelburne and Nick Friedell, the Chicago Bulls have contacted veteran point guard Derek Fisher as well as guard Brandon Roy. With Derrick Rose sidelined for an extended period of time, the Bulls have been exploring various options at point guard.
Fisher's possible relationship with the Bulls first surfaced after his buyout in the spring. It was an addition that Rose seemed intrigued with at the time. "D-Fish definitely could help our team," Rose said at the time. "But like I said, it's not up to me. It's up to the front office to make that call. If he comes, we'll welcome him with open arms, but we don't know right now."
Reports broke on Sunday night that the Houston Rockets had made a 3-year, $25 million offer to Chicago Bulls C Omer Asik. Though the Bulls cannot comment directly on the matter until July 11, they have reaffirmed their commitment to retaining the 25-year-old Turkey native, according to Bulls GM Gar Forman:
Gar: "I don’t want to speculate until we actually see something. We’ve made it clear we value Omer."— K.C Johnson (@KCJHoop) July 2, 2012
The Rockets' offer, which included a $15 million third year, will likely put the Bulls in a tough fiscal position if they were to match the offer. However, Asik averaged 7.6 points, 2.5 blocks and 13.0 rebounds per 36 minutes in the 2011-12 NBA season, and the Bulls -- already without PG Derrick Rose for much of the season -- are hoping to retain as much talent as they can entering the 2012-13 season.
The Houston Rockets signed restricted free agent Omer Asik to a three-year offer sheet that will pay the center close to $15 million in the final season of the contract. This might be the toughest decision the Bulls have faced in a long time, writes SB Nation Chicago's Ricky O'Donnell.
Omer Asik met with the Houston Rockets as soon as NBA free agency opened on Sunday morning, and now the Chicago Bulls' backup center is set to sign a three-year, $25 million offer sheet with the team. The deal won't go final until July 11, when the Bulls will have three days to match or lose Asik for nothing.
Because he was a second round pick with only two years of NBA experience, the Bulls were able to catch a bit of a break in that Asik could only be offered as much as the mid-level exception -- or $5 million annually -- in the first two years of the deal. Apparently Houston is really upping the ante in the third season, with the club offering $15 million to the center.
The Bulls have consistently insisted they intend on matching any offer to Asik, but the ultra pricey third season will certainly make things interesting.
The Chicago Bulls have never once paid the luxury tax during its existence, though owner Jerry Reinsdorf has stated publicly he'd be willing to incur the fine if his team was a proven contender. The Bulls' title chances in 2013 died the same time as their chances in 2012, when superstar point guard Derrick Rose tore the ACL in his left knee. With a host of key reserves becoming free agents on Sunday and a payroll edging close to the tax threshold, it's been assumed the same bench that carried the Bulls during coach Tom Thibodeau's first two seasons in Chicago will look drastically different next season. However, Chicago Tribune reporter K.C. Johnson says the Bulls might be keeping one more "Bench Mob" member than originally expected.
Bulls have not ruled out picking up Kyle Korver's $5 million option, though that situation won't be settled until Asik's price is set.— K.C Johnson (@KCJHoop) July 1, 2012
Korver's presence would particularly benefit Chicago if starting small forward Luol Deng chooses to have wrist surgery and misses the first few months of the season. Asik has already reportedly been offered $32 million by the Houston Rockets, with the Bulls giving every indication they'll match. Stay tuned.
We're beginning to see the market for former Chicago Bulls guard Kirk Hinrich form, with the Utah Jazz, Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics all looking like potential suitors for the veteran's services. The 31-year-old spent last season with the Atlanta Hawks before becoming an unrestricted free agent this summer.
According to Dave McMenamin of ESPN Los Angeles, the Lakers are considering Hinrich as part of their search for a new point guard. The team has also considered retaining Ramon Sessions, but Hinrich, Chauncey Billups and Jameer Nelson are under consideration as alternative options.
In addition to the Lakers, the Jazz and Celtics could also be suitors, as Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio reports:
Celtics reportedly have interest in Jamal Crawford. Source adds they may also meet with Kirk Hinrich.— Sam Amico (@SamAmicoFSO) July 1, 2012
Hinrich presumably wouldn't start in either Utah or Boston given the respective presences of recently-acquired Mo Williams and Rajon Rondo, but he'd provide a solid second option for either team. If he lands in L.A., it's more likely that he'd be the starter given their lack of quality options.
The Portland Trail Blazers plan to make an offer to restricted free agent Omer Asik on Monday after a group of team executives met with the center on Sunday, as Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reports. Given that Asik is a restricted free agent, the Chicago Bulls retain the right to match any offer sheet that the center signs during this offseason.
After Houston tonight, Blazers GM Neil Olshey will meet with Chicago center Omer Asik and make him an offer, sources tell Y! Sports.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 1, 2012
To clarify, a Portland contingent is meeting with Omer Asik tonight, but Olshey was meeting with a different player, source tells Y! Sports.— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 1, 2012
The Blazers have also reportedly signed Pacers center Roy Hibbert to a four-year, $58 million max offer sheet, so they're clearly looking to upgrade at the center position this summer. Portland already has one of the top big men in the sport in LaMarcus Aldridge, but pairing him with another quality big could give the team a dominant front court.
The Indiana Pacers have reached out to restricted free agent Omer Asik to discuss a possible contract, as Mike Wells of the Indianapolis Star reports. The Chicago Bulls are capable of matching any offer that Indiana makes to the young center, and thus far they've indicated that they plan to match any offer that's made.
With Roy Hibbert reportedly signing an offer sheet with the Portland Trail Blazers for the max, it appears that the Pacers are genuinely considering the possibility that they're starting center departs this summer. The general expectation in the industry has been that Hibbert would stay with Indiana, but the Blazers appear to be making an aggressive push.
Asik isn't quite the level of player that Hibbert is, but he would provide the Pacers with a solid post presence that wouldn't be nearly as expensive. He's a raw offensive player that can't create his own shot, but he's a good defender and rebounder in the post, a rare commodity these days.
The Chicago Bulls, looking to bolster their backcourt depth with PG Derrick Rose likely to miss much of the season with a torn ACL, have been among the teams pursuing free agent G Brandon Roy. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, the Bulls are among the five finalists for Roy's services.
The Indiana Pacers, Dallas Mavericks, Golden State Warriors, Minnesota Timberwolves and Bulls are all hoping to acquire the 28-year-old Roy. He entered the league in 2006 as the No. 6 overall pick and spent his first five seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers, averaging 19.2 points and 4.7 assists per 36 minutes.
But Roy missed the 2011-12 NBA season with chronic knee problems, yet has since undergone the platelet-rich plasma therapy that restored Kobe Bryant's knees, Wojnarowski reports, which has piqued the interest of many NBA teams.
Free agent Jermaine Taylor will play for the Chicago Bulls' summer league team.— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 1, 2012
Taylor, a second round draft pick by the Washington Wizards in the 2009 NBA Draft, has spent time with the Wizards, the Houston Rockets and the Sacramento Kings in his brief NBA career. He did not log any games at the NBA level in the 2011-12 season, but in 2009-10 and 2010-11, he played in a combined 65 games, averaging 16.1 points and 4.9 rebounds per 36 minutes.
In the 2011-12 D-League season, Taylor played in 14 games, scoring 14.2 points per game.
NBA free agency will officially begin at 12:01 a.m. on Sunday, and it appears the Chicago Bulls' biggest free agent -- literally and figuratively -- already has one suitor readying to make a hard push to attain his services. Backup center Omer Asik is drawing strong interest from the Houston Rockets, with the team preparing to make a pitch to the two-year veteran.
Following up on yesterday's report on Rockets' FA plans, DMorey planning to meet with Bulls RFA Omer Asik as soon as tonight, source said.— Jonathan Feigen (@Jonathan_Feigen) June 30, 2012
The Bulls have maintained all along they plan to keep Asik, though it means the team will have to enter the luxury tax for the first time in its existence. Because Asik was a second round pick with only two years of experience, the most Houston will be able to offer in the first year of the contract is equal to the mid-level exception, which is set at $5 million.
Head over to Blog-a-Bull and read Matt's great breakdown of Chicago's current salary cap fiasco on the eve of free agency.
The Chicago Bulls face some tough decisions when free agency begins on July 1.
K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune is reporting that Chicago Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau and the team's front office still have a long way to go until the two parties are able to reach an extension agreement.
Thibodeau led Bulls to a 62-20 record in the 2010-11 NBA Season and a league-best 50-16 record in the 2011-12 NBA Season. The Bulls then exercised their option to keep Thibodeau around for the 2012-13 NBA Season, but Thibs and Bulls GM Gar Forman both want to keep the 2010-11 NBA Coach of the Year with the team for a long time.
Johnson suspects the Bulls are wary of offering Thibs big money because of the Scott Skiles trouble in the early aughties, when the Bulls signed Skiles to a rich, long-term coaching contract that they later regretted
The Chicago Bulls were overjoyed to find Kentucky point guard Marquis Teague still available with the No. 29 overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft. SB Nation Chicago's Ricky O'Donnell likes the selection, too.
Unrestricted free agent point guard Jonny Flynn as identified the Chicago Bulls as one of six teams he would be interested in signing with this off-season, according to Dave McMenamin of ESPN Los Angeles. Although Flynn is a former first-round-pick (No. 6 overall in the 2009 NBA Draft), the unorthodox spelling of his first name is probably a bigger story than anything he has done on an NBA court to-date. After showing serious flashes of potential at Syracuse, Flynn has suffered through three difficult seasons in the NBA. He holds career averages of just 9.2 points on 40.0 percent shooting and 3.9 assists to 2.3 turnovers per game over 163 contests and 90 starts.
His rookie season is the only campaign where he managed to shoot over 40 percent from the field (41.7%), and he has posted Player Efficiency Ratings (PER) of 13.0, 7.1 and 11.2 over his three NBA seasons. It would be a stretch to think Flynn could become an upgrade over C.J. Watson, but he may be a cheaper alternative. However, the Los Angeles Lakers, Portland Trail Blazers, Phoenix Suns, Toronto Raptors and Brooklyn Nets are also reportedly on Flynn's list.
Maybe the team can put this all to rest by selecting a quality player at No. 29 overall in the 2012 NBA Draft on Thursday night, or perhaps they could even make a bold trade up to get something more than a projected role player.
While previous rumors had tied the two sides together, ESPN's Ric Bucher confirms that the Chicago Bulls have emerged as a potential suitor for free agent guard Brandon Roy's services. Roy retired last year due to knee problems, but he's reportedly considering a comeback if his health permits.
Portland amnestied Roy's contract last year after the 27-year-old decided to retire due to the condition of his knees, but he's since told teams that he's interested in returning to the NBA. Already, we've seen the Golden State Warriors and Minnesota Timberwolves show public interest, but they're not the only interested parties.
Previous reports had the Bulls, Indiana Pacers and Dallas Mavericks being interested in addition to Golden State and Minnesota. Bucher spoke with sources that confirmed Chicago's interest, which makes sense given the team's need for backcourt help.
As the 2012 NBA Draft approaches, the Chicago Bulls are looking for creative ways to improve their team going into the upcoming season, so what if they could land a top-10 talent without giving up any assets? The Bulls are among four teams linked to Brandon Roy for a possible comeback, according to a report by Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. The former NBA All-Star and No. 6 pick in the 2006 NBA Draft is just 27 years old and may be available for the full mid-level exception as he attempts to make a comeback.
Roy was amnestied by the Portland Trail Blazers last season and he retired due to chronic knee pain, but Wojnarowski notes a comeback is still a real possibility:
As ex-Portland Trail Blazer Brandon Roy plans his comeback to the NBA, the Chicago Bulls, Dallas Mavericks, Indiana Pacers and Minnesota Timberwolves have emerged as serious suitors to sign the former All-Star guard, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.
Roy's recovery from chronic knee problems has been recently spurred by undergoing the platelet rich plasma therapy procedure that Lakers star Kobe Bryant popularized with NBA players, sources said. The blood spinning procedure gave profound relief to the knees of Bryant, Tracy McGrady and baseball star Alex Rodriguez.
The platelet rich plasma therapy procedure is typically used to protect cartilage in the knees, but Roy has very little cartilage left and is essentially bone-on-bone at this point in his career. The hope that Roy could return to peak form is dubious at best, as Zach Lowe of Sports Illustrated explained in an exchange via Twitter:
Have spoken to three sports medicine experts who say platelet-rich-plasma therapy would have little/no value to Brandon Roy.— Zach Lowe (@ZachLowe_SI) June 26, 2012
@RotowireATC Yeah, that's what folks are saying.— Zach Lowe (@ZachLowe_SI) June 26, 2012
To end on a positive note, the Minnesota Timberwolves may be out of the running for Roy at this point, as they traded the No. 18 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft to the Houston Rockets in exchange for swingman Chase Budinger and the rights to Lior Eliyahu on Tuesday morning.
After the 2012 NBA Draft hits on Thursday night, those closely monitoring the NBA offseason will turn their attention to free agency. Point guard Deron Williams headlines the list of free agents, which also includes Chicago Bulls center Omer Asik. Asik, a restricted free agent, was deemed the 22nd best free agent available in list by together by NBA bloggers at CBS Sports.
Here's what Royce Young had to say about Asik:
22. Omer Asik, C, Chicago Bulls: Quietly, Asik turned into one of the better interior defenders in the league. His issue is that he contributes almost nothing offensively, but in terms of frontline size, he's a in the top tier in this class. -- RY
With the Bulls close to the luxury tax threshold, it may be difficult to retain the Turkish center. Asik averaged 3.1 points and 5.3 rebounds per game during his second season in Chicago last year.
Rival GM's expect the Clippers (who don't have a GM yet), Bulls and others to pursue Allen, who is a very desirable free agent— Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) June 25, 2012
The 16-year veteran has spent the last five seasons with the Boston Celtics. He averaged 14.2 points per game during the 2011-12 season and knocked down 45.3% of his three-point attempts; for his career, he's a 40% three-point shooter.
Allen made $10 million last season, according to Basketball-Reference.com's salary data.
Chicago Bulls forward Luol Deng still may be traded before Thursday's NBA Draft, but Yahoo's Adrian Wojnarowski reported Monday that the Golden State Warriors can be crossed off the list of potential trade partners. According to Wonjarowski, the Bulls have told Deng that they won't be dealing him to the Bay Area.
The Bulls have privately assured Luol Deng that there's "no chance" of a deal sending him to the Warriors, league source tells Y!— Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) June 25, 2012
According to a report from The Telegraph, Luol Deng was part of a trade package offered to the Golden State Warriors in return for the No. 7 overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft, Andris Biedrins and Dorell Wright.
Following his decision to play for Great Britain despite a wrist tendon injury, the Bulls General Manager Gar Forman, who called Deng in from holiday for a meeting earlier this month, is understood to have offered the Warriors Deng and the 29th pick in the NBA draft on Thursday for centre Andris Bierdrins, small forward Dorrell Wright [sic] and the seventh pick in the draft.
Deng averaged 14 points and 5.9 rebounds per game during the 2011-12 season.
With rumors swirling, Chicago Bulls small forward Luol Deng says that he wouldn't be surprised if the only team he's ever played for ultimately trades him this summer, as Ian Whittell of ESPN Chicago reports. While training in Texas with Great Britain's national team in anticipation of this year's Olympics, Deng discussed the possibility of a deal:
I believe there is always to some extent truth behind rumors. But as an athlete, if you get caught up in them, you are really wasting your time because it's not something you can control... As much as I want to stay on the team -- I love Chicago, I love the Bulls -- at the same time, I know the business part of it. Sooner or later, all the rumors are going to come up.
The 27-year-old has been a key part of the Bulls for years, but he's coming off a bit of an off year. Starting in 54 games, Deng averaged 15.3 PPG, 6.5 RPG and 2.9 APG, but he shot just 41 percent from the field, far below his career mark of 46 percent. The latest rumor has Deng going to Golden State for a package based around the No. 7 overall pick.
The NBA released international jersey sales figures for the first time ever, and Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose ranks No. 2 among top sellers in 2011-12, behind only Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant. Rose had the best-selling jersey in the United States this season, and recent sales numbers from Adidas locations outside the U.S. establish him as the No. 2 draw in China and Europe behind Bryant and the No. 3 seller in Latin America behind Bryant and LeBron James. If you are wondering why Adidas locations are used to determine the international sales numbers, it's because Adidas is the official on-court uniform and apparel provider for the NBA.
Here is a look at the official 2012 NBA jersey sales lists for international markets, via Bulls.com:
1. Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers
2. Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls
3. LeBron James, Miami Heat
4. Kevin Garnett, Boston Celtics
5. Dwight Howard, Orlando Magic
6. Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat
7. Rajon Rondo, Boston Celtics
8. Carmelo Anthony, New York Knicks
9. Blake Griffin, Los Angeles Clippers
10. Kevin Durant, Oklahoma City Thunder
11. Pau Gasol, Los Angeles Lakers
12. Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas Mavericks
13. Amar'e Stoudemire, New York Knicks
14. Tony Parker, San Antonio Spurs
15. Ricky Rubio, Minnesota Timberwolves
1. Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers
2. Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls
3. LeBron James, Miami Heat
4. Dwight Howard, Orlando Magic
5. Rajon Rondo, Boston Celtics
1. Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers
2. Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls
3. LeBron James, Miami Heat
4. Kevin Garnett, Boston Celtics
5. Dwight Howard, Orlando Magic
1. Kobe Bryant, Los Angeles Lakers
2. LeBron James, Miami Heat
3. Derrick Rose, Chicago Bulls
4. Kevin Garnett, Boston Celtics
5. Dwyane Wade, Miami Heat
The Chicago Bulls have a decision to make on C.J. Watson's $3.4 million option as they look to bridge the gap during Derrick Rose's recovery from surgery to repair his ACL, but they could also turn to the free agent market this summer. HoopsHype has released 2012 NBA Free Agent Rankings at the point guard position, and some potential veteran targets found their way into the middle of the pack behind stars like Deron Williams (No. 1) and Steve Nash (No. 2).
Former Bulls guard Kirk Hinrich may be a nice fit for the team, and he comes in at No. 16 on the list. Hinrich probably he won't command anything close to the $5.48 million he banked last season, but his NBA experience and familiarity with the organization could be an asset early next year. John Lucas III drops in at No. 22, behind guys like Keyon Dooling (No. 19) and Gilbert Arenas (No. 20).
Here are the top-16 available free agent point guards, according to HoopsHype:
After an impressive breakout performance with the Chicago Bulls during the 2011-2012 season, point guard John Lucas III could be looking at multi-year contract offers this offseason, as K.C. Johnson of Chicago Tribune writes. Given the large number of teams holding cap space this year, Johnson thinks teams will be aggressive in pursuing Lucas.
The 29-year-old Lucas spent years riding non-guaranteed contracts as a journeyman before emerging as part of Tom Thibodeau's rotation with Chicago this season while Derrick Rose battled injuries. Over 49 games, Lucas averaged 7.5 PPG and 2.2 APG while shooting 40 percent from the field and 39 percent from three-point range.
While he didn't play nearly as much when Rose and back-up C.J. Watson were both healthy, Lucas was able to shine in a variety of opportunities throughout the season. He scored 20-plus points in four different games, including an unreal 24-point effort against the Miami Heat that featured a game-winning jumper over LeBron James.
The Chicago Bulls finished the season tied with the San Antonio Spurs for the best record in the NBA, but they fell short in the playoffs as Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah and Luol Deng suffered through injuries. Veteran NBA point guard Jason Kidd hits free agency this summer, and he still sees serious potential in the Bulls. In fact, the 39-year-old admitted that he is open to the idea of joining the Bulls (via Mike McGraw of The Daily Herald):
"I can't rule out the Bulls," Kidd said Monday. "They're a team that competes. They play extremely hard. I could end up there, too, to try to help win. I wouldn't rule them out."
"My days of playing 38 minutes are over. Right now, physically and mentally, I feel great and would love to compete. I would be fine starting or not starting. I do want to finish the games, though."
"I think at this point in my career, it's about winning and hopefully having the opportunity to win another championship."
The Bulls hold a $3.4 million option on C.J. Watson going into the summer, so their decision in that regard -- as well as the direction they take in the 2012 NBA Draft -- may determine whether Kidd considers the Bulls a good fit going forward.
"We will be able to match any offer he'll receive on the open market place, but it's our goal to have conversations with him the very first day, and we see him as a key piece to our team moving forward.
"We think he has shown the potential to continue to improve, and it's our goal that Omer Asik will be a Chicago Bull in the foreseeable future."
Asik averaged 14.7 minutes, 3.1 points and 5.3 rebounds off the bench for the Bulls during the 2011-12 season.
The Bulls are reportedly interested in trading into the draft lottery. SB Nation Chicago editor Ricky O'Donnell can't think of anything that would be more out of character for the franchise.
"He'll remain under contract with Real Madrid for the next couple years. But it's certainly our goal and our expectation that Nikola will be in a Chicago Bulls uniform somewhere down the line. We'll continue to monitor his progress and feel really good about the development that's taking place.
"He's seeing major minutes for Real Madrid. When he does come over, we think he's really got a chance to be a key piece to what we're trying to put together."
The NBA has released the 2012 NBA Summer League schedule for the 60-game bonanza in Las Vegas during July, and the Chicago Bulls have head-to-head matchups against the Boston Celtics, Houston Rockets, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers and Milwaukee Bucks. The Bulls hold the No. 29 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft and they are looking for a contributor to help out while Derrick Rose and Luol Deng take time to heal, so the Summer League will be a great opportunity for get a look at their rookie class.
NBA TV will televise all 60 games, and specific broadcast information will be released at a later date. Here is the complete schedule, via NBA.com (all times CT):
Friday July 13
3 p.m. - Atlanta vs. Washington
5 p.m. - Houston vs. Toronto
7 p.m. - Golden State vs. LA Lakers
9 p.m. - Sacramento vs. Charlotte
Saturday July 14
3 p.m. - Memphis vs. New York
5 p.m. - Golden State vs. Denver
7 p.m. - LA Lakers vs. Sacramento
9 p.m. - Houston vs. Washington
Sunday July 15
3 p.m. - New York vs. Phoenix
5 p.m. - Denver vs. Dallas
7 p.m. - San Antonio vs. Atlanta
9 p.m. - Washington vs. NBA D-League
Thomas & Mack
5:30 p.m. - Toronto vs. Miami
7:30 p.m. - Cleveland vs. Charlotte
9:30 p.m. - New Orleans vs. Portland
Monday July 16
3 p.m. - Atlanta vs. Boston
5 p.m. - Dallas vs. Toronto
7 p.m. - Cleveland vs. NBA D-League
9 p.m. - LA Clippers vs. Minnesota
Thomas & Mack
5:30 p.m. - Houston vs. Sacramento
7:30 p.m. - LA Lakers vs. Miami
9:30 p.m. - Milwaukee vs. New Orleans
Tuesday July 17
3 p.m. - Denver vs. New York
5 p.m. - Washington vs. Memphis
7 p.m. - Portland vs. Houston
9 p.m. - Chicago vs. Boston
Thomas & Mack
5:30 p.m. - San Antonio vs. LA Lakers
7:30 p.m. - Cleveland vs. Phoenix
9:30 p.m. - Minnesota vs. Charlotte
Wednesday July 18
3 p.m. - Milwaukee vs. Washington
5 p.m. - Chicago vs. Houston
7 p.m. - Atlanta vs. Dallas
9 p.m. - San Antonio vs. LA Clippers
Thomas & Mack
5:30 p.m. - Sacramento vs. Toronto
7:30 p.m. - New Orleans vs. Phoenix
9:30 p.m. - Golden State vs. Miami
Thursday July 19
3 p.m. - New York vs. Toronto
5 p.m. - Portland vs. Atlanta
7 p.m. - Cleveland vs. Minnesota
9 p.m. - NBA D-League vs. Milwaukee
Thomas & Mack
5:30 p.m. - Boston vs. Sacramento
7:30 p.m. - LA Clippers vs. LA Lakers
9:30 p.m. - Charlotte vs. Denver
Friday July 20
3 p.m. - New York vs. Cleveland
5 p.m. - Denver vs. Portland
7 p.m. - Miami vs. San Antonio
9 p.m. - NBA D-League vs. Phoenix
Thomas & Mack
5:30 p.m. - Memphis vs. Charlotte
7:30 p.m. - Chicago vs. Golden State
9:30 p.m. - Dallas vs. New Orleans
Saturday July 21
3 p.m. - Portland vs. Miami
5 p.m. - Dallas vs. San Antonio
7 p.m. - NBA D-League vs. Minnesota
9 p.m. - Memphis vs. Phoenix
Thomas & Mack
5:30 p.m. - Golden State vs. New Orleans
7:30 p.m. - Chicago vs. LA Clippers
9:30 p.m. - Milwaukee vs. Boston
Sunday July 22
3 p.m. - Chicago vs. Milwaukee
5 p.m. - Boston vs. LA Clippers
7 p.m. - Memphis vs. Minnesota
In an article about draft-related trades that could make sense, ESPN's Bradford Doolittle suggests that the Chicago Bulls should consider trading Joakim Noah to the Sacramento Kings in an effort to shake things up for the future. The actual deal that Doolittle suggests would send Noah and the No. 29 pick to the Kings in exchange for Tyreke Evans and the No. 5 pick.
Evans could run the point while Derrick Rose recovers from knee surgery, then play alongside him when he comes back. The Bulls desperately need a second shot-creator, and Evans could be that guy. Evans has underachieved defensively in the NBA, but Tom Thibodeau would cure him of that. He has the physical traits of someone that should be an elite defensive guard.
Doolittle also notes that the draft pick component of the trade would be integral for Chicago, given that the higher pick would allow the Bulls to select a new young prospect like Andre Drummond, Thomas Robinson or Harrison Barnes.
At this point, it's probably most reasonable to note that this is simply the suggestion of one writer rather than an actual rumor. There are zero indications that the Bulls are considering Noah trades, and it's probably most reasonable to expect the Bulls to simply stand pat and avoid making any major changes this offseason.
But as Doolittle shows, the Bulls could really shake things up with a little creativity if they want.
As the NBA Finals get underway, SB Nation Chicago editor Ricky O'Donnell is stuck pondering the future of the Chicago Bulls' roster.
1st group: Will Barton, Jared Cunningham, John Jenkins, Doron Lamb, Tanner Smith, Hollis Thompson— Aggrey Sam (@CSNBullsInsider) June 4, 2012
2nd group: J'Covan Brown, Tu Holloway, Fab Melo, Josh Owens, Robert Sacre, Tony Wroten— Aggrey Sam (@CSNBullsInsider) June 4, 2012
Draymond Green, Andrew Nicholson, Scott Machado were supposedly in over the weekend— Aggrey Sam (@CSNBullsInsider) June 4, 2012
The Bulls hold the No. 29 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft and will be looking to add enough talent to compensate for the loss of PG Derrick Rose, who will likely miss at least half the 2012-13 season.
According to Aggrey Sam of Comcast Sports Net, Rose is making steady progress.
Rose is already walking with a soft brace on his injured knee and only one crutch, according to a source who has witnessed the Bulls superstar's initial stages of.recovery at the Berto Center. Another source, who spoke to Rose recently, told CSNChicago.com that the All-Star point guard's "spirits are up," a consistent description of his mental state since surgery to repair his torn left ACL last month.
As Sam notes, best-case scenarios put the guard back around the All-Star break, though it's certainly not in Chicago's best interest to rush the return of the one-time MVP.
The 2012 NBA Draft Lottery will be held on Wednesday night, and while the Chicago Bulls obviously will not be participating, three members of the Bulls' division will be. Here are the odds of landing a top three pick for each team involved:
|# Combos||1st pick||2nd pick||3rd pick||Any top 3 pick|
The lottery is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. CT on Wednesday, May 30. ESPN will have the television coverage.
The Chicago Bulls aren't exactly in a great position to start next season, but perhaps that could change. Los Angeles Lakers stars Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol didn't finish the year on the best of terms, and Sam Smith of Bulls.com is reporting that Gasol would love to find himself in a Bulls uniform next season. The big man has two years and roughly $38 million left on his contract, so the Bulls would need to make a trade to acquire Gasol, but as Smith says:
The interesting part, according to Lakers' insiders, is Gasol would like to play for the Bulls. And what you hardly need any sources for is to see how he and Bryant basically can't stand one another. It was no secret around L.A. what all those post series comments were about. "We got to be committed to each other," said Ron Artest. "This year we wasn't as committed collectively, and that hurt us a lot." Said Bynum: "We just weren't doing it together."
With Derrick Rose out until at least late-December (and probably longer) and Luol Deng battling through the summer Olympics despite torn ligaments in his left wrist, the Bulls need someone else to carry the scoring load for the majority of the regular season in 2012-13. Gasol will turn 32 in July, but he's still a productive big man and the Lakers are primed to move him this summer. Smith says the Lakers have zero interest in Carlos Boozer, so that leaves big ticket players like Deng and Richard Hamilton as potential players that could match Gasol's large salary in a trade scenario.
The Chicago Tribune is reporting the Chicago Bulls may be looking for a new practice facility, potentially closer to downtown Chicago and their home stadium, the United Center. President and COO Michael Reinsdorf spoke with Tribune reporter K.C. Johnson on the matter, saying the move from the suburbs could help the players who must commute from the northern suburbs facility to the United Center for game days:
"We're intrigued by the idea," Reinsdorf said. "We're happy at the Berto Center, but it's something we're going to take a look at for our players. Eliminating their commute could be a good thing."
The Bulls have been practicing at the Berto Center in Deerfield, IL, for 20 years, but a move closer downtown would help both the players and the team save on expenses related to the long commute.
Chicago Bulls small forward Luol Deng expects to play in the 2012 Olympics for his native Great Britain despite a hand injury, but doing so may prove to be extremely costly for Great Britain basketball. As Rob Dugdale of BBC Sport reports, the insurance cost for Deng's injury over the course of the Olympics could ultimately cost more $470,000.
Deng injured his left hand back in January, but the Bulls forward continued to play throughout the season despite the injury. Chicago wanted Deng to have the surgery when the Bulls' season ended with a first-round upset at the hands of the Philadelphia 76ers, but he has insisted to wait until after the Olympics to undergo the procedure.
Back in 2008, Great Britain basketball paid roughly $200,000 over a five-game span to insure a back injury that Deng was dealing with, but officials said that those costs had gone down in recent years. The new insurance fee will apparently cost significantly more. As Great Britain basketball official Chris Spice noted, the organization may have to pay up to $10 million if Deng suffers a career-ending injury while playing for the team.
Chicago Bulls forward Luol Deng has repeatedly spoken about his strong desire to play for Great Britain in the 2012 London Olympics, and Brendan Gallagher of The Telegraph is reporting that Deng will not have surgery and has been cleared by Bulls management to join the British team ahead of the Olympics. The lanky small forward battled through torn ligaments in his left wrist for the second half of the NBA season and into the playoffs, but the team had been pushing for him to get surgery in the offseason so he would be ready for next year -- star point guard Derrick Rose will be unavailable to the Bulls until at least late-December as he recovers from surgery to repair a torn ACL.
Great Britain is the host country of the Olympic games, so they have been given an automatic bid into the Men's basketball field. Deng stated his intention to take advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity after the season ended, and now the Bulls are on-board as Great Britain has agreed to take out a sizable insurance policy (terms are still being negotiated) on Deng for the games.
The plan -- as it relates to the Bulls -- is for Deng to undergo a post-tournament assessment to determine whether he will need surgery before the 2012-13 NBA season. Alternatively, he may be able to rest the wrist for three months until training camp begins and get back to action immediately.
As Gallagher notes in is column, the Bulls didn't have strong grounds to deny Deng the chance to pursue his childhood dream:
If the injury was such a massive concern and so likely to be aggravated why was he played so much when the Bulls were the first team to qualify for the NBA play-offs and he could have been rested for most of the last month of the regular season?
Great Britain plays in Group B in the 2012 London Olympics, which includes Spain, Brazil, China and Australia.
When superstar point guard Derrick Rose crumpled to the floor during Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinal series between the Chicago Bulls and the Philadelphia 76ers, plenty of people had questions and concerns about whether a heavy minute load led to Rose's torn ACL. Head coach Tom Thibodeau recently joined "The Waddle & Silvy Show" on ESPN 1000, and aside from noting that Rose is "doing great" in his rehab and saying the former MVP is approaching rehab workouts with the same focus he used on games and practices, Thibs also address the issue of Rose's minutes during the season:
"I look at it overall and when you look at the season, Derrick played about 1,300 minutes this year. When you look at where it ranks in the league for a player of his caliber it's really low. I think in overall minutes he was like 154th in the league (165th with 1,375). I think in minutes per game it was 28th or 30th, somewhere in that area (actually he was tied for 23rd at 37.0). I think it was unfortunate. It was one of those years where he had a lot of different injuries."
"I don't look back and regret that. I think it's unfortunate, it happened and you just have to move on."
Rose missed 27 of Chicago's 66 regular season games with an array of injuries, and now he is on the long road back to the court. Optimistic reports put Rose's return 6-9 months away, while more conservative estimates have him out for 8-12 months and then still needing time to get back up to his elite level.
NBA 1st Team: Durant, LeBron, Kobe, CP3, DHoward. 2nd: Love, Griffin, Bynum, Parker, Westbrook. 3rd: Dirk, Melo, Chandler, DWade, Rondo.— Art Garcia (@ArtGarcia92) May 24, 2012
Rose played in only 39 games in the shortened 2011-12 season, and he played only one playoff game, tearing his ACL during the fourth quarter of the team's opening game. Rose did receiver, however, 44 votes, according to a press release from the NBA. Only F LaMarcus Aldridge (55 votes) and C Marc Gasol (52 votes) received more votes despite missing the All-NBA teams.
Rose average 21.8 points per game and a career-high 7.9 assists per game in the 2011-12 NBA Season.
Chicago Bulls small forward Luol Deng was named to the 2011-2012 NBA All-Defensive Second Team on Wednesday afternoon, as the league announced. He was one of four Bulls starters, along with guard Derrick Rose, center Joakim Noah and power forward Carlos Boozer, to receive votes.
Heat forward LeBron James, the league's MVP this season, was the leading vote-getter for the All-Defensive First Team, which also included Thunder forward Serge Ibaka, Magic center Dwight Howard, Clippers guard Chris Paul and Grizzlies guard Tony Allen.
As SB Nation's Mike Prada notes, Knicks center Tyson Chandler curiously failed to make the All-Defensive First Team despite being named the league's Defensive Player of the Year recently. Two different voting bodies would explain the differing results, but it's surprising nonetheless.
Other than Deng and Chandler, Celtics forward Kevin Garnett, Lakers guard Kobe Bryant and Celtics guard Rajon Rondo fill out the remainder of the All-Defensive Second Team. Noah received the third-most votes of any center in the league with 14, while Rose and Boozer each received one vote apiece.
The Chicago Bulls will have the No. 29 overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft. The latest mock draft from Draft Express has the Bulls tabbing UC Sana Barbara shooting guard Orlando Johnson with the selection.
Johnson certainly has the size to play in the NBA at 6-foot-5. He also has a freakish 6-foot-11 wingspan and is said to have one of the best vertical leaps in the class. Johnson averaged 19.7 points and 5.8 rebounds per game for the Gauchos last season.
The Bulls could certainly figure to be in the mix for backcourt help with Derrick Rose scheduled to miss the majority of next season while he recovers from a torn ACL. At the off-guard position, the team also holds on option on Ronnie Brewer.
The latest news out of the Chicago Bulls' camp is that the team's star center will seek additional training this offseason from Hall of Fame center Kareem Abdul-Jabber. C Joakim Noah finished the 2011-12 NBA season strong, but managed only 12.1 points and 11.6 rebounds per 36 minutes through the end of the regular season.
The five-year NBA veteran will turn to the 20-year veteran for further career development. Abdul-Jabber averaged 24.1 points and 10.9 rebounds per 36-minutes in a career that lasted into his early 40s.
He previously worked with now-All-Star C Andrew Bynam as an assistant with the Los Angeles Lakers in 2005. Abdul-Jabar also worked with Michael Olowokandi and Jerome James in previous coaching endeavors.
"I think Carlos had a very productive year," Forman said. "You look back, he’s the only guy on our team that played every game and practiced every day on a team that won more games than anybody in the NBA. He was our second leading scorer and our second leading rebounder. We’re looking forward to Carlos continuing to make progress. I know the last game clouds it a little bit, but he was very productive in the games before that. Even in that last game, in 27 minutes, he had 13 boards. I anticipate Carlos being with us and having another productive year next season.
"We’re happy Carlos Boozer is here and we like the core of the team that we have under contract."
Following his unimpressive Game 6 performance against the Philadelphia 76ers -- in which he shot 1 for 11 with 3 total points -- Boozer has been the topic of swirling rumors. Many believed the Bulls would consider using the amnesty clause on the 30-year-old forward in order to release him without his salary counting against the cap.
Boozer played in all 66 of the Bulls games in the 2011-12 NBA season, and had a career-high .187 win shares per 48 minutes according to Basketball-Reference.
Chicago Bulls guard C.J. Watson underwent surgery on both feet on Thursday.