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2011 NBA Free Agency: Caron Butler To Sign With Los Angeles Clippers

The Chicago Bulls, despite being considered favorites earlier in the day, will not be signing free agent small forward Caron Butler. According to David Aldridge of TNT, Butler will be heading to the Los Angeles Clippers:

Source: Caron Butler agrees to terms with Clippers. Three years, 24M. 1 hour ago via Mobile Web · powered by @socialditto

Both the Bulls and New Jersey Nets were capable of offering the 31-year-old Butler contracts beyond the nearly $6 million per year mid-level exception, but the Bulls -- given their present financial constraints surrounding reigning MVP Derrick Rose -- seemed unlikely to offer the highest bid.

Butler, who averaged 15.0 points per game last year, despite playing a career-low 29.9 minutes per game, will now earn about $8 million per year with the Clippers. With Butler now unavailable, the Bulls may have trouble filling out their bench as hoped because the Detroit Pistons have re-signed the Bulls' backup target, Tayshaun Prince.

For updates on free agent moves, stay tuned to SB Nation Chicago. For in-depth coverage of the Bulls, visit Blog a Bull. For up-to-the-minute coverage of all of the key personnel moves, check out the SB Nation NBA free agency StorySteam.