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.