Would you really give up anything to pair Derrick Rose and Dwight Howard?

I've often seen this quote made about potentially trading for Dwight Howard, and I ask, is it really true? Would you give up anything the Bulls had outside of Derrick Rose to land Dwight Howard?

Orlando sends
Dwight Howard
Hedo Turkoglu
Gilbert Arenas

Chicago sends
Luol Deng
JOakim Noah
Carlos Boozer
Taj Gibson
Omer Asik
Ronnie Brewer
Jimmy Butler
Nickola Mirotic
Bulls 2012 draft pick
Bulls 2014 draft pick
Bulls 2016 draft pick
Bulls pick owned by Charlotte

Bulls roster:
Derrick Rose
Dwight Howard
Gilbert Arenas
Hedo Turkloglu
Kyle Korver
Keith Bogans

Everyone else needs to be added via the MLE (if it exists still) or the veteran minimum.

You still in? I don't think I'm in anymore.

Which means at some point, we're drawing the line by saying "You know what Taj Gibson, we just can't throw him in" or "That 2016 draft pick from the Bulls just pushes it over the top".

Assuming you are also not in on this trade, the interesting part of the discussion then becomes what would you really give up for Dwight Howard? First, push comes to shove, I'd still give up all of the non playing assets. [Mirotic and the four draft picks].

You need to keep two of your four front court pieces as well, and one of them needs to be one of the low end contract guys. We'll assume that leaves us Boozer and Omer, but it could be Boozer and Taj that we keep as well.

Chicago's new front court then looks like:
Howard, Boozer, Taj or Omer

To make the trade work under the salary cap, the Bulls can't take both Hedo and Arenas if they keep Boozer, so one of them gets pulled out of the deal, and the Bulls eat the other contract. We'll assume that we're eating Arenas, because his contract is far worse.

Different pieces need to be added in order to make the deal work financially at this point.

Final trade? Orlando sends:
Dwight Howard, Gilbert Arenas

Chicago sends:
Luol Deng, Joakim Noah, C.J. Watson, one of Taj or Omer, Ronnie Brewer, a stash of 1st round picks, the rights to Nikola Mirotic

When actually trying to figure out what is legal under the salary cap, I think this is actually the most I'd give up for Dwight Howard [new CBA could change what we could legally do here, or change significantly what we'd be willing to do of course].

Bulls roster:
PG: Derrick Rose, Gilbert Arenas
SG: Kieth Bogans,
SF: Kyle Korver, Jimmy Butler
PF: Carlos Boozer, Taj
C: Dwight Howard

Possibly, Omer could be there instead of Taj depending on Orlando's preference. The Bulls have basically no draft picks in the future either, and will be counting on signing ring chasers to fill in the gaps, but I think they'll have little trouble finding a ring chaser or two to play SG and SF which are the easiest positions to fill in the NBA.

Now when I look at this deal from Orlando's perspective, it's not so bad if Dwight Howard leaves, but there's certainly nothing great about it. You're not saving a ton of money, because you're taking back a lot of long term salary. You are loading up on draft picks, and one of the draft picks might actually be worthwhile since it's based on Charlotte's performance instead of Chicago's.

Still, it's a deal that certainly doesn't wow you as a Magic a fan. The team left is probably a low rung playoff team in the East and after competing for titles with Howard, it's likely not enough to sway fan interest a whole heck of a lot.

At any rate, the point is, as a Bulls fan, it really isn't "anything for Dwight" even if we like to say it is, and I'd wager that Bulls management isn't going to throw in four first rounders and Nikola Mirotic either. At some point, there are limits. Even for Dwight Howard.


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  • Absolutely. I'd do it in a heartbeat. I do whatever I can to get those two guys together, and worry about the rest later.

    And to be honest, I don't think that's a really hard decision. The only player that gives me pause is Noah (and only because I love the guy. Production-wise, it's a no-brainer).

    You pair Rose and Howard and you instantly have the best duo in the league for the foreseeable future, and at the two most important positions on the floor, no less.

    As it stands, they've built up some nice depth, but they're still one of those teams that really depends on heavy contributions from multiple players to be a true contender. That's not how historically great teams are built. We need to upgrade our CORE talent.

    The Heat can roll out their 3 guys and compete with anyone, regardless of who else they're playing with. I think the Thunder are getting to that point too with Durant and Westbrook. With the Bulls, they're depending on too many "very good" players, to have to play "great" in the postseason.

    With Rose and Howard, this team is basically guaranteed to be in the title picture for the next 7-10 years. I'll take that.

  • In reply to Juiceboxjerry:

    It would be an interesting call to give up everything. I don't know that they could find the ring chasers though to fill in the gaps if they started with a core of Rose, Howard, Arenas, and Turkoglu, and needed to fill in the other four guys in the eight man rotation without draft picks or the MLE if it goes away.

  • As a Heat fan, I would fear the combination of Howard and Rose. Thus, for selfish reasons, I hope this does not happen.

  • We also own the rights to PF Vladimir Veremeenko (acquired for Hinrich). Do we include him also in the deal?

    Bulls fans all want Howard but my gut feeling is that Howard wants Los Angeles

  • In reply to bulls6:

    I think that might be pushing it too far. Vladimir? You always need a Vladimir waiting in the wings.

  • Comon, Doug! Anything, ANYTHING besides Rose for Howard is a NO BRAINER! I don't care how BAD the rest of that roster looks, the inside/outside combo of Rose and Howard would be unstoppable.

  • In reply to Dajody1:

    If it is literally everything and you are left with just Howard, Rose, Arenas, and Turkoglu and the salary cap rules change and the MLE goes away, I don't think you have a shot in hell of winning, and you're better off with how you are right now.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Look at the Laker teams of the early 2000's....their roster, outside of Shaq and Kobe, was a joke. No team could match up with an inside/outside combo of Rose and Howard. Could you imagine the Bulls defense with Dwight in the middle? The trade would be Boozer, Deng, Noah, Asik and Gibson for Howard, Arenas and Hedo.....fill out the remaining roster with minimum level players and the Bulls would be unbeatable. Dwight Howard would neutralize James and Wade, which is the KEY to beating Miami!

  • The Bulls may be approaching the point where they have acquired enough respected/valued assetts to cash in multiple pieces on a star player(who plans on leaving his own team anyway ala Carmelo). But then what team are you left with?

    The Nikola Mirotic theft(largely because everyone else was afraid of his newly singed/long term contract comittment with Real Madrid) is looking more and more like an NBA starting caliber player whose offensively skilled. Asik if he can add 60% free throw shooting and any kind of weak side/lob dunk game ala Chandler/Jo of old then he becomes even more valued which he already is(by Houston supposedly for Lee). If Jo bounces back from injuries he's at minimum a solid starting center. Taj is well respected as an all around good player especially when he gets the minutes pre-Carlos. As for Deng his salary is a non-starter, and Boozer's injuries and plumetting offensive numbers for the last half of the season and playoffs make him likewise a no-go.

    So who might be available? If it's Howard I imagine it would take something like Jo, Taj, Mirotic(or Asik), Charlotte first and two firsts of our own. Plus bodies to make the salaries work, and we'd have to take on a bad contract like Turkoglu. So what you have left are two superstars. I'm not a big fan of Howard personally as he cheap shots other players in the face on supposed follow throughs from blocks(similar to Kobe's shot follow through aka bitch slaps). And one or both of those body drops of Derrick's were intentional. Shaq who is a maniacle jerk, but nonetheless keeps dogging Dwight for a reason. He's certainly, Howard, no late game closer. He's an accumulator of points and rebounds often in one half(not always the second).

    If you can get Howard don't you have to take the shot(?), but Doug makes a good point what are you left with? And will Howard resign with a gutted/two man team? I doubnt he wants to come to Chicago anyway, and especially with a diminished hollow Bulls squad. He likes Derrick, but not that much. Aside from the Howard pipe dream though is there a key piece/modern Cartwirght equivalent star in this case wing out there we could get for a budding Mirotic, Taj etc.?

  • In reply to RoadWarrior:

    Your suggested trade is fairly similar to mine.

    I think you have to draw the line at taking back both bad contracts which means you keep Boozer, Deng, and Noah in the deal.

    I think you need to keep at least two of our front court guys (almost certainly Boozer and one of Taj/Omer), and then whatever else you do will pretty much work, because you'll only need to fill out the rest of the roster with wing players which are easier to get.

    If you try to fill out a starting big man and your first bench big man with ring chasers you'll be in trouble.

  • As long as we keep Keith Bogans as SG I'm happy, lol

  • Hell, i'd trade Rose for Howard. Fuck it.

  • D. Howard obviously doesn't want to show his true hand, probably feels he would get a backlash if he says he wants to join forces with Rose or another superstar. So he'll keep to the generic " i wanna win championships" and basically force Orlando to trade him at the deadline if they struggle. If they are in playoff contention, they might opt to keep him till the summer and look for a sign and trade which would lower the pricetag on getting him somewhat. I think the prospect of Mirotic could be the sweetner that gets it done with Noah, draft picks or whatever else. I just don't see Orlando trading him at the trade deadline, he is that good they would risk everything to the bitter end.

  • I just can't see Orlando trading DH within the Conference if they can help it, Chicago would have to make a better offer than anyone, or Howard would have to make the Bulls his only choice. I just don't see that happening, at least not unless forced by radical circumstances - could the new CBE have ANY influence on such moves?

  • In reply to petert23:

    I don't think the trading within the conference thing is that big a deal. Orlando is best off getting the best deal it can for Dwight not trying to screw him over the most.

    It will almost certainly take them 5+ years to have any shot at a title anyway, so you might as well get the most you can.

  • I question how well they would really play together. They would be good but I don't think they would be a perfect match. Rose is not the best passer and Howard loves the lob pass. Howard should be with Chris Paul or someone who is a spot on passer to reach his full potential. Besides, why would a two man team be better than this current Bulls team? Didn't we just see a one man team with good players around him beat the "greatest team of all time"!?

  • this is one of those that when it is only theoretical, not actually on the table I probably say no too, but if it were actually about to happen, I have to say yes too. i.e. I am emotionally attached to some of the guys that we are giving up, but the reality of getting Howard would overcome that emotion.

    Of the non playing assets, the only 2 of significant potential value are Charlottes pick and Mirotic, who looked like at least a Toni Kukoc level player this summer if not better. However, both of those assests are not likely to be in the league for 3-4 even 5 years, making them less valualble to Orlando. Additionally, we are going to need some fresh new faces and legs (even with Rose and Howard).

    I am certain that the MLE will not exist in its current free wheeling form, if at all, so the Bulls(and thank god, the Heat also)will be severly handicapped in acquiring any starting level talent. This in the end might be the deciding factor. With an MLE you literally do anything to get Howard, without one you don't.

    Finally, as you suggest Orlando may not like the deal no matter what we throw in(other than Rose). They are likely to get better offers, or certainly offers with better top end talent. I also don't believe that Howard really wants to come to Chicago, unless there is a stronger personal relationship between he and Rose than we are aware of.

    Doug, maybe a good follow up post for tomorrow is would you trade Rose straight up for Howard, would Orlando.

    If Howard does not end up in L.A. I will be shocked, Wilt, Kareem, Shaq, Howard none of them started out in L.A.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    I agree that the MLE makes a big difference in whether you gut the team, as does a hard cap.

    To answer your side question, I would say No I wouldn't trade Rose for Howard, but yes that Orlando would.

    I think I'd consider the deal, simply because I think Dwight's the easiest player to build around in the NBA, but you'd need to restack your entire team again because we don't have good complementary players for him.

  • Issues with Howard:
    1. Fouls out too much
    2. Cannot shoot well(jumpers or FTs). Will be a liability in the 4th quarter.
    3. Has regressed in a way(you can say the team's talent has gone down) but except for one year(Garnett was hurt that year and Hedo/Rashard played counterfoil to LeBron). He might have picked up some post moves etc... but none of his moves on offense is "money" moves .
    4. Does he have that super will to win or will depend on his bull-dozing ability? Shaq's jumper in his prime was much better than Howard's.

    That said, he seems like a Gasol type of player which means he is the perfect complement for Rose(if Rose proves he can make those clutch decisions/shots in ECF/finals environment).

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    Shaq's jumpe rwas better in his prime than Howard's?

    How many jumpers did Shaq shoot in his career that weren't when the shot clock was winding down to 0 or the game wasn't a complete farce?

    Does it take more than one hand to count this number? I don't want either guy ever shooting a jumper to be quite honest.

    And yes, Howard is a Bulldozer, but who cares? He requires a double team off the ball when he's posting up.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    A jump shot? no. But shaq did have that turn around baseline hook that was very affective. That is what seperates shaq and Howard. Shaq developed an offense, Howard hasn't yet.

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    It doesn't matter. They can't beat Miami with or without Howard on the roster.

  • In reply to BullzBrian:

    Really? You don't think if the Bulls added Dwight Howard in a reasonable deal [huge stretch to happen I know] that they woudln't have beaten Miami last season?

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    thats a definite yes. No doubt, between Rose and howard they coulda put up about 60 ppg, and Thibodeau could make just about anybody play decent defense. With Howard and a Thibodeau scheme it would've been impossible to score against the bulls.

  • In reply to ixonflex69:

    even a lineup such as
    rose, brewer, korver, gibson and howard would be impossible to get buckets against.

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    In reply to DougThonus:

    Nope. Chicago greatly overachieved last regular season while Miami underachieved, and that fact was exposed bigtime in the playoffs when the Bulls were embarrassed 4-1. You seriously think Howard would have been the difference between 4-1 and winning the series? Keep dreaming....

  • In reply to BullzBrian:

    bulls lost that series with a -2.2 point differential. thats close, and its exactly the heats point differential in the finals, too. i think the fact that the bulls-heat series was kind of ugly and only lasted 5 games and definitely left a bad taste in bulls fans mouths belies how close that series actually was. far from "embarassing" and could easily go the other way next year (or whenever the nba comes back).

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    In reply to Gavolt:

    Well you and DougThonus can keep throwing a moral victory parade because the games were close. But any way you try to rationalize it, only winning one game in a best of seven is EMBARRASSING especially with homecourt advantage....

  • In reply to BullzBrian:

    Embarrassing is a Miami fan lingering around in a Bulls fans forum for his moral victory parade. Why dont you head over to the Dallas fan's site and tell them how awesome LeBron and Miami were in the finals.

  • In reply to BullzBrian:

    who said anything about a "moral victory"? i just said the games were close, and if wade and lebron had played the final 5 minutes of the ECF games like they played in the finals, the outcome would have been very different. doesn't mean the bulls will win in the future (odds are, i suppose, they wouldn't), but the slim margin tells us things could have been different.

  • If we did a Howard deal, I would like it to look something like this

    Noah, Boozer, Deng, and the 12-14-16 draft picks, plus any waste(expiring) contracts needed(Bogans,Pargo, Lucas) to make the money work.

    For: Howard and Arenas or Turkeyglue, but not both. Howard and Arenas make about what Noah Boozer Deng do, Howard and Turkeyglue make substantially less, all three make substantially more, though the difference could be made up with the expiring contracts.

    The Bulls lose their entire starting frontcourt, but still have enough pieces left to field a competitive squad around Rose and Howard, even though non of the remaining players are legitimate starting caliber players right now(Arenas, maybe Taj are borderline?)

    Orlando has a solid front line to build a team around but no stars to excite the fanbase(although Noah does have Florida connections)but they are not paying Arenas $20 something million per for 3 more years, and/or Turkeyglue $10 million per for 3 more years. Getting rid of bad contracts comes at a cost.

    The Bulls get the best player by far, but Orlando gets 3 legitimate starters and rid of 2 horrible contracts(guys that really cannot play anymore) and 3 #1's for the future. That seems fair to me, and certainly more than the Knicks gave up for Anthony(not saying that Anthony is at Howards level, but he is in the next group right after him).

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