So the Detroit Pistons are looking to dump Richard Hamilton and are rumored considering dumping the 8th overall pick to save 20 million or so in cash. The Bulls don't have a trade exception to save all that money for Detroit, so they can't get in on that deal.
However, they might be able to dangle an even better deal for Detroit. One that also helps the Bulls considerably as well.
Detroit trades Ben Gordon + #8th pick for Kyle Korver, Keith Bogans, Jannero Pargo, John Lucas III, and one (or both) of the Bulls late 1sts.
I know what some of you will say:
Ben Gordon can't defend. -- He's better than Kyle Korver
Ben Gordon hogs the ball. -- They need that for the 2nd unit
Ben Gordon costs too much. -- Without a hard cap it doesn't matter
The Bulls need a selfish scorer to lead the second unit. They need a three point shooter who performs in the clutch. They need someone who can put the ball on the floor when team's try to chase them off the three point line.
Ben Gordon can do all these things, Kyle Korver can not. This is a big talent upgrade.
The Bulls can also likely resign Bogans after Detroit waives him to save money if they want him while Pargo and Lucas were signed to deals specifically to make trades easier.
With the eighth pick the Bulls draft?
Don't know, Kevin States will probably tell us soon, however, DraftExpress has this guy going eighth right now, and he sounds pretty good to me.
Regardless of whom the Bulls get at eighth, it's likely someone who is more likely a future NBA starter with a likely to have a role player floor. Better than deep in the draft where we're hoping for role player potential with a 'not in the league' floor.
So what's the catch?
There are several. First, this plan hinges on the fact that the new CBA will not institute a hard cap. I believe that's likely, because I don't believe the owners are going to get the world, and a hard cap could actually be disastrous for the league as well as unlike football which has national interest due to fantasy football regardless of who is popular, parity may not work so well in the NBA.
Of course we'll need to wait and see what the next CBA brings before knowing for sure. Unfortunately, the trade needs to be made prior to the new CBA being ratified, so the Bulls may get gun shy there.
Can Ben Gordon and Bulls management get along?
By the end, they clearly didn't like each other all that much. Gordon didn't wait for an offer from Chicago, and Chicago didn't look like it was going to make one if Gordon waited.
I'm sure there was some bitterness over his failed contract negotiations with the Bulls in consecutive seasons, and Gordon was surely initially amped to join such a winning organization like the Detroit Pistons. Totally different atmosphere there I'm sure.
However, this is a case where time should heal all wounds. Gordon's in the midst of basketball hell right now. His playing time has been crap, his performance has slipped, his team stinks badly, and quite frankly Detroit, as a city, is no Chicago.
I'm guessing that winning sixth man of the year for Chicago sounds a lot better than trying to resurrect the Pistons with their current cast. From the Bulls perspective, there simply aren't many high caliber SGs out there available. Especially ones that can both shoot and put the ball on the floor.
Gordon is a good guy, a bit aloof, but an extraordinarily hard worker, and would actually fit with coach Thibodeau's style of coaching very well as he takes basketball extraordinarily seriously. Thibs also has great respect for Gordon from when the Bulls played the Celtics in 2009.
What would the new Bulls rotation look like?
Starters: Rose, Brewer, Deng, Boozer, Noah
Bench: Watson, Gordon, Bogans, Taj, Asik, Thomas, #8
(assuming we resign Bogans after Detroit waives him and bring back Thomas for one more year)
That gives the Bulls to put forth explosive offensive and defensive line ups that they can't currently do as well as have someone to carry the scoring load with the bench unit.
For this to work out well for the Bulls they don't merely rely on Ben Gordon becoming a great player or a star player, they only rely on him accepting his role as a bench player. Something he's far more likely to do after spending a two year stint in basketball hell.
Would the Pistons really do this? Who knows. The rumors of their pick being available for cap relief might be greatly exaggerated. If not, shedding 32 million rather than 20 million seems like a pretty sweet deal for them.