Per K.C. Johnson, per Sam Smith, the Bulls bought out Tim Thomas today. There's also a less interesting press release up on Bulls.com
The buyout means the Bulls likely have enough room
under the league's $69.92 million luxury tax threshhold to sign a
veteran big man to a minimum contract this summer. Pargo signed a
one-year, $2 million deal while Hunter's contract calls for one year
and $1.3 million.
While the buyout price isn't known, K.C. seems to be speculating that the Bulls will have enough to keep another player, possibly Aaron Gray on his qualifying offer.
K.C. notes Hunter's salary, however, his salary will only count 825k against the cap which is the price of a third year minimum veteran player. Any veteran player who makes more than that of a 3rd year minimum contract has the salary over that portion picked up by the league and not going on the team's cap or luxury tax total. That's to prevent teams from discriminating against veteran's with higher minimum contracts.
The Bulls do need to keep Hunter the full season to get that benefit though. Hopefully, later today, I will find the exact amount of the buyout.