Kelenna Azubuike - the waiver wire candidate we can believe in

Kelenaa Azubuike would have been someone I rooted for the Bulls to get last summer, and now he's available for the minimum after being waived by the Knicks.   Now, Azubuike is still recovering from knee surgery.   He hasn't suited up yet since the injury, but he claimed he could have played in the Knicks last game.

The Knicks weren't so optimistic about where he was.   They claimed he was 80% and that it would take too long for him to get healthy.  

Well, maybe that's the case, or maybe it's not.  I don't know how healthy he is or how long it will take him to get to 100%.   I know at 100% health, he's a guy who could legitimately be a starting SG for us and not just a guy who's a minor upgrade to Keith Bogans.

He has potential to be the best SG on our team, faint praise that is.

Azubuike can shoot, he can defend a bit, and he has more floor game than your typically spot up shooter even if it's not a ton.   He basiaclly fits everything we need out of a role playing SG. 

Forget Rasual Butler and Corey Brewer and take a chance on Azubuike.   Maybe he won't work out because of the knee, but if he does work out he might legitimately help solve our SG problems.  If Corey or Rasual work out, they're still just filler guys who provide depth to protect from injuries not solutions to improve the team in any considerable way.

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  • I would say sign both Butler and Azubuike...Butler can backup or give a break to Deng and if Azubuike doesn't get healthy, he can get some minutes at the SG position too. Maybe Azubuike will get healthy in another 1 month which is fine for the Bulls.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    No need to sign both guys, keep cap room open for this summer to add a player at draft time instead.

    Also, you don't need 5 SGs, you're already splitting that time between Brewer, Korver, and Bogans. Adding one guy sends someone to the bench or just adds depth, you don't need 2 IMO.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    I agree, we did fine with 13 guys when JJ was here. Signing one guy would be logical and could save money too.

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    Forman basically said we aint trading or signing a SG until the new CBA is hammered out. We aint taking on salary at draft time and the cap room expires on July 1.

  • In reply to sukid09:

    I think you're right. Priority #1 is making sure Derrick can resign, and that it doesn't cost us Deng, Noah, or Boozer

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    I heard that Azubuike has been rehabbing for a while now....an still hasnt gotten any better. Dude might be done.

  • In reply to Csharp:

    that is certainly the risk, and maybe even likely, but if all it costs us is a few hundred grand to have a look see, lets have one, plus I imagine we do a physical before signing him.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    I'd love to take a chance on him, I mean the worst thing that can happen is he never plays and just keeps Scal company on the bench. Not real optimistic we'll ever see him play but I'd rather not playing Azubuike than playing Butler.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    plus, you're bringing in a guy who would be your 13th man, hence not be on the active roster. You can sign him & give him time to get healthy

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Where are you getting that he's going to be bought out from though? If the Knicks buy out Brewer they'll have the spot they need to sign Jeffries, why buy another guy out?

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    It's been reporting by several people that he was bought out.

    Frank Isola was first I believe:
    http://twitter.com/#!/FisolaNYDN/status/42389931791888384

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    I should say he was waived outright and not bought out.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    can someone explain to me why the crowd always screams when scalbrine gets on the floor ??

  • In reply to deewaves:

    He's like a victory cigar. He only gets minutes when the game is over, the Bulls are winning and he has no chance of screwing it up. Either that or it's a blow out loss, but the Bulls haven't had many or any of those this year.

    Just like when he was in Boston, he's a mascot.

  • In reply to JonoHimself:

    ok

  • In reply to JonoHimself:

    COUNT ME IN:

    I mentioned his name earlier. I know he is good friends w/ Watson.

    BUTLER & MELO (teaming up in NYC?):

    http://twitter.com/AlexKennedyNBA/status/42402774918500352

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    I also was high on his game last year, if people can recall.

    It's all about TALENT EVALUATION.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    So we sign an injured player to be a insurance for possible injured player? Wow!. Think out of the box, get Murphy. Pax talks about length, Murphy is the guy. Taj will not mind sitting a litle bit more. Plus, if Carlos gets injured, that's you guy. The 14th can be Butler

  • In reply to supercesto:

    I don't tink we have a shot at Murphy or Bibby, but I would take either ahead of Azubuike if we could get them.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Agreed. Of course you were right on Bibby going for the wide open PG position in Miami. And I heard the Bulls were interested so whether they pursued him or not it's over now. Really any move like Azubuike with someone that has something to offer I'd be cool with. I wouldn't have gotten so ticked off if they hadn't been linked with butler. If they get him I will be pissed I'd rather get no one. And no to Corey Brewer another guy who can't shoot. No.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    I would certainly take Murphy, but I guess the Celtics Irish is just a bit stronger than Chicago's. not sure that Bibby is a fit with the Bulls.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    Don't think he's a great natural fit, but he's shooting 44% from the three point line and would be a more powerful injury replacement player than anyone else, since our biggest risk is a Rose injury.

    Of course, a major Rose injury sinks the ship no matter what, but if Derrick were to miss two or three weeks in mid march to early April, Mike Bibby could fill in against the crappier teams and help keep the ship afloat.

  • In reply to JonoHimself:

    COREY BREWER UPDATE:

    Is he on the Bulls' radar?

    http://twitter.com/AlexKennedyNBA/status/42368470888878080

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    I think espn is taunting you:

    http://espn.go.com/sportsnation/polls

    see poll on the right about carmelo anthony and the bulls

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    If Butler goes to New York...Bulls are getting Brewer

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    I always liked Azubuike. Great find. Sign him the hell up. That would be a worthwhile move for sure. Please do not let the Bulls sign .323 from three waste of space Rasual butler. Please.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    Azubuike wont even play this year...ill take a role in player in Butler.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    I like Azubuike as a waiver/buyout sort of deal. He may be hurt, he may not, but the cap space is all irrelevant, right? I mean you're just going to sign him through the end of this season... Same goes for Corey Brewer. I couldn't get myself excited about Rasual Butler. He's maybe an upgrade over Bogans, but if so it's minor and he has no upside.

    Azubuike's upside is all about health. Brewer's upside comes in from the fact that maybe you can teach him to turn it over a little less and improve his outside shooting a little. Plus, the way we love defense in Chicago with Thibs, who really doesn't want another defensive specialist on the pile-- particularly one who matches up at SG/SF and is positioned to stifle many of the superstars in the eastern conference?

    In either case, I don't see any risk, because the cap space serves no purpose anyway as you can't take it with you... And I'm working off the assumption you get these guys for around minimum and for no longer than the end of the season. So given those assumptions I believe we should sign both Azubuike and Brewer.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    I like Azubuike also....but like i said, if hes hurt, an isnt getting any better, i dont think the Bulls go after him. Corey Brewer is a nice option...its just his shot is terrible. I love his size and athleticism and i also like that Noah was his teammate. Brewer is 6'7-6'9 (ive seen both so i really dont know what he is) plays d, brings energy, can guard other 2 guards. Rasual Butler is probably the guy that can come to Chicago an give us something either off the bench or in Bogans starting role. An if were looking for a guy that can just stand at the 3pt line an make open 3's...thats probably Butler. But if Azubuike is healthy, ill take him too.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    I'd rather have no one than sign butler. What does he bring besides a body? Honestley i'd like to have Azubuike because if he can crack the rotation he'd actually be a good fit. Someone who can knock down open threes and can actually create his own shot which would be something new on the bulls because only derrick can do that. If they dont take azubuike then take brewer... I'd rather have zilch than butler who really has no impact at all. He's better than bogans thats for sure but not a huge upgrade

  • In reply to StephanH:

    I rather have Butler an keep our bigs then get a guy like Courtney Lee an lose Taj or Asik. Butler is a upgrade over Bogans. His strong point is making 3's. And he will be seeing plenty of wide open 3's with Rose dishing him the ball.

  • In reply to StephanH:

    I really like Azubuike, as he is a poor man's Joe Johnson. He can be very effective off the bench as two legit scorers in Korver and Azubuike. I say start Brewer and play Azubuike off the bench. This will strength the scoring off the bench.

    Cree

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    In reply to chrishunigan:

    Especially as a player off the bench who's worked with CJ before. That couldn't hurt.

    Best case scenario - he gives the Bulls some bench minutes this year and next year becomes the starter.

    Worst case - he and Deng do some charity work together.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    get them both, and offer Azibuke a deal maybe involving a team option for next year

  • In reply to ChiRy:

    I dont think Azibuike has played in the last 2 years lol I do like what he could bring though.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    I actually like Corey Brewer

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    I think Corey Brewer would be a better SG option for us. He is supposedly being bought out by the Knicks. He is 6-9 great defender, teammate of Noahs and legit SG for us. 3 pointer is the only thing he is down on this season but is also playing with Beez and Love not much of shooting to find your touch and has been in and out of the lineup.

    Brewer also handles the ball well if you look at tapes from the Florida championships

  • In reply to ChardBull85:

    The problem with Corey Brewer is that he's a well below average scorer from every single point on the floor. The last thing the Bulls need is a defensive specialist that is completely devoid of any offense what so ever.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    a 40% scorer from the field
    Avg 3 FT attempts
    avg 13pts a game when a starter.

    This guy isnt completely devoid of offense

  • In reply to ChardBull85:

    you cant expect at this point in time to get a guy with his defense and high offense
    with knowing Noah that helps chemistry and transition. this guy is Brewer with better handles and rebounding presence he also allows Thib SG/SF possibilities

  • In reply to ChardBull85:

    I deff. think Noah could get him accumlated really fast. Thats a positive thing about Brewer.

  • In reply to ChardBull85:

    He scored that many because he took enough attempts. Give Scal enough shots and he'll score 13 points a game too. Look at Brewer's shooting percentages vs league average:

    At Rim: 58.4 vs 64.1%
    < 10 feet: 27.1 vs 39.1% 10-15 feet: 37.8 vs 39.1% 16-23 feet: 31.0 vs 39.5% 3 point (EFG%): 39.5 vs 54.0% He's a complete scrub on the offensive end. He's OK as a defensive specialist, but it's not like the Bulls are short on defensive minded players.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    Blah, blog at the under 10 feet line, should say 27.7 vs 39.1% from there.

  • In reply to ChardBull85:

    Kind of Ronnie Brewerish, but not as physical.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    and I believe that he is a bit undisciplined and a bit of a turnover machine, but maybe Thibs could get in his head and fix him.

    I like his length and athleticism, take him over bogans, but isn't he more small forward than shooting guard.

    IF we were dumping Bogans, I'd say pick up both KAZ and Brewer, but Del Thibideau isn't dumping Bogans this year, or next unfortunately.

  • In reply to ChardBull85:

    6'7 26% 3 pt shooter....i really liked him until i saw his stats....very underwhelming

  • In reply to Csharp:

    So's Bogans, but Brewer is a better defender. That's why Thibs keeps Bogans in the starting lineup, though, because he can defend and doesn't make mistakes. Corey Brewer can start off the game, take the best opposing wing and let Deng concentrate on offense a bit. Ronnie Brewer can come in, Deng can take over the best wing, and Ronnie can wreak havoc in the passing lanes and provide an offensive boost. C Brewer and KK can backup Deng, depending on if we need shooting or defense.

    I wouldn't mind taking a flyer on Azubuike, either, even though a certain person would never stfu about it. Butler would be ok, but he's strictly an end of the bench guy who lets Thibs strategize a bit more.

  • In reply to ChardBull85:

    I'd have to agree that Brewer wouldn't add much to the half court offense, but he is a better on ball defender than Bogans or Brewer. He's been very successful defending SGs, and could help the offense by helping create transition offense. He could certainly run the floor with Rose and Noah. I wouldn't mind the Bulls having him to defend Johnson tomorrow night. He's very good at getting around screens and using his length and quickness to challenge shots. That would work well against Ray Allen also. He

  • In reply to ChardBull85:

    the case for Corey Brewer?

    http://espn.go.com/blog/truehoop/post/_/id/25595/the-knicks-could-use-a-good-geek

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Azubuike would be a good choice even if he is certainly out the shape. He hasn't played yet this season. He looks better than rasual bettler !

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Ya when hes healthy, hes pretty good....from what i heard though, he hasnt gotten any better even with the rehab.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Interesting, they must think they're seriously in the running for Murphy if they're clearing two roster spots.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    The big question is can he play. Reportedly NY waived him because they didn't think he was going to be ready to contribute any time soon.

  • In reply to walrus:

    Probably not but who cares, he at least has the upside the crack the rotation unlike the other players we could pick up.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    If he's not going to play or even serve as depth/insurance, then it seems like a complete waste of cap space.

  • In reply to walrus:

    Well we need to sign someone for the minimum no matter what.

    Might as well get someone who has potential to crack your lineup at some point even if he's a couple weeks away.

    He said he could play now. Of course, he could be full of crap, but I'd at least bring him in for a workout.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    If he can play then I absolutely prefer him over any other candidate. He can shoot, he can rebound for a 2 guard, and as you said, he's a pretty good defender. But if he isn't going to play at all, I'd rather spend the money on Butler...as little as that prospect excites me.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    no risk, no reward, and in the case the risk is almost zero.

    Couldn't we still take a chance on Shaun Livingston, ooopps.

  • In reply to walrus:

    Nobody else we could sign is going to play because they're not better than the guys in front of them. May as well sign the one guy who if healthy would crack your rotation, even if him being healthy is unlikely.

  • In reply to walrus:

    So Kelenna Azubuike, Corey Brewer, Rasual Butler, Mike Bibby, Troy Murphy, Jared Jeffries and Morris Peterson were the only players made available right?

    I read that TJ Ford, Jason Kapono and Dan Gadzuric were coming down to the wire on their buyouts.

  • In reply to walrus:

    I watched some of the other vids the guys that did the "Like a Bosh" have. A couple of them have their moments. This is by far the funniest one I saw IMO.

    http://www.youtube.com/user/TheBasketballJoneses?feature=chclk#p/u/5/Po5jjkZAK9s

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    Butler could play in the rotation...3 season he averaged above 10ppg, but ya John is right, he still injured.

  • In reply to Csharp:

    Butler is probably as good as Bogans (and I say probably, it's not definite), which puts him in a battle for the 8th man spot, and 5th guard.

    Do you want to disrupt chemistry over a battle for the 8th man spot? Are you really going to platoon four separate guys at SG?

    If you can't get someone who is definitely better than at least one guy in the rotation then don't even make it a battle, just let the good chemistry work and sign the guy to be depth in case of injury.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    IMO...Butler is better then Bogans. Butler is a offensive player...bogans is a defensive player asked to make 3s. I would pick Butler over Bogans anyday if were looking for a guy to hit a wide open 3. Chemistry with a player like Bogans shouldnt mean anything. The Bulls players know Bogans isnt very good.

  • In reply to walrus:

    Kelenna Azubuike is the next best waiver/buyout option, had Rip Hamilton been bought out, IMO.

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    You mean,Rip Hamilton, McGrady's whining bitch little sister.

  • In reply to walrus:

    Exactly. He is a good player but he hasn't played this season yet. we can't know how time will it take him to be in game shape.

  • In reply to walrus:

    Nahhhhh, really?

    I'm sure he was good, but it's a significant red flag when the Knicks, a team lacking depth, waives a quality guy because of an injury. That's saying loud and clear, 'he's not worth it'.

  • In reply to JonoHimself:

    +1

  • In reply to JonoHimself:

    BTW, do we see a pattern of all the guys getting waived/bought out. It is mostly perimeter oriented players and no inside players like what Miami needs. It makes it easy to understand why the Bulls didn't trade Asik or Gibson.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    +100

  • In reply to ChiRy:

    and Miami probably would be better off with Gibson & Asik right now than they are with Bosh

  • In reply to ChiRy:

    http://espn.go.com/blog/TrueHoop/post/_/id/25595/the-knicks-could-use-a-good-geek

    Case for Corey Brewer all summed up right here for me and you all

  • In reply to ChardBull85:

    That's the case for him on the Knicks, a team with offensive players sorely in need of a defender. The Bulls have defenders, they need an offensive player.

  • In reply to ChardBull85:

    Corey Brewer is a 26% 3 pt shooter. We need someone that can stretch the floor. I like Brewer, but he just doesnt really fit right now imo. If he wants to come here, ill take him but i dont think the Bulls want him.

  • In reply to ChiRy:

    http://espn.go.com/blog/TrueHoop/post/_/id/25595/the-knicks-could-use-a-good-geek

    Corey Brewer would be a great addition

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    They apparently also want Gadzuric or possibly Butler since it seems he and Melo have been friends since middle school.

  • In reply to walrus:

    They've also been wanting Earl Barron for some time and a backup PG, so it's possible TJ Ford is a target for them too.

  • In reply to walrus:

    For a moment I thought you said Earl Barron at backup PG and thought "well that would give them great size at the position".

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Earl Barron could post up every PG in the league.

  • In reply to walrus:

    im all for giving Ronnie the nod to start and give more minutes to him he has the resume to garner starter minutes but it doesnt seem Thib wants to save Bogans like Thomas and only play him with matchups.
    We need to fill a spot that is evident enough but i wouldnt look to find the guy that sures us of our 5th starter for the future off waivers

  • In reply to walrus:

    plus if we got Corey we could have the BREW CREW in the stands ha

  • In reply to walrus:

    mmmm i think Butler is like 6 years older then Melo

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Great call, love me some KAZ, how much of our summer cap space would he cost us.

    I have to imagine the Knicks would not have cut him if his knee was sound. If I recall, he had a major knee injury, the kind that takes more than a year to recover from if you do at all.

    Probably worth the risk if it only costs us a few hundred grand.

    No on Butler, but I kind of like Corey Brewer, the whole Florida/Noah conection, however, he is too muck like what we aready have, good length/althleticism, no offense some good defensive abilities.

    I say go for the KAZ.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    I really like Kelenna Azubuike. I really wanted him after Ben Gordon left that summer. He's a career 41% 3pt shooter, can play PG, SG, and SF, and he was the only guy on that GS team that actually played defense. I'll definitely take him over Corey Brewer, and Rasual Butler. I hope his injury status doesn't scare Gar/Paxson away. We didn't sign T-mac because of his health and he actually turned out ok for DET. I believe, if proven healthy and if given playing time, Azuibuke could potentially be the future SG of this team going forward.

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    If you think that a smirking JackAss who undermines everything that a team stands for is turning out OK then yea, I guess he did turn out OK for Detroit, the most dysfunctional team in the league.

    We don't need gargabe like him on this Bulls team, thats why I was so thrilled that Ben Gordon went to Detroit they deserved each other.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    +100

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