With agents and teams first being able to make contact a couple of days ago, a flurry of rumors about players being interested in Chicago and vice versa have hit the net. I'll attempt to summarize what been discussed so far.
Interested in Chicago:
Tracy McGrady - Per Adrian Wojnarowski
Tracy McGrady wants to play for the Bulls, sources said, and coach Tom Thibodeau has a relationship with him going back to their Houston Rockets days together. T-Mac is still a consideration to return to the Pistons, too.
Jamal Crawford - Per Michael Wilbon
Jamal Crawford wants to come; a little birdie told me so. But again, setting aside the issue of whether he'll play enough defense for Coach Thibs and whether he'd be the best fit with Rose, will he take a 50 percent pay cut to come back to Chicago?
Caron Butler - Per KC Johnson and Adrian Wojnarowski
As the NBA free-agency period begins the test-the-waters mode, Butler's interest in the Bulls is legitimate, according to league sources.
Caron Butler, one of the most pursued small forwards in this year’s free-agent class, privately considers the Los Angeles Clippers and Chicago Bulls as his two most preferred destinations, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.
Butler is most attracted to the Bulls because of the chance to play with Derrick Rose and compete for a title, but he would have to take significantly less money to play in Chicago.
Chicago interested in:
Nick Young - Per ESPN Chicago (also noted by Woj)
The Chicago Bulls have talked to the representative of Wizards restricted free agent Nick Young, but agent Mark Bartelstein emphasized Young is not in a hurry to leave Washington.
Shawne Williams - Per Adrian Wojnarowski
Miami, Chicago and New Jersey are strongly considering offers for Knicks free-agent forward Shawne Williams, who is coming off a strong season. The Knicks will make a strong bid to keep him, and he’s inclined to stay with them for a multiyear offer.
Brandon Roy - Chris Broussard's twitter
Bulls' dream (sources say) & Heat's nightmare is for Chi to get Brandon Roy after Blazers cut him w/amnesty clause....
Josh Howard - Chris Broussard's twitter
But Bulls know Roy likely to be picked up first by a team with cap room. Source says Chi has interest in Josh Howard too, so does Wash & NJ
Aaron Afflalo - Mark Stein's twitter
Bulls and Lakers lust after Afflalo, I'm told, but it'll take a cap-room team to assemble an offer good enough to get him out of Denver
Marco Bellineli -
Per Ken Berger
But Chicago hasn't ruled out also making a push for restricted free agent Marco Belinelli, whose defensive liabilities wouldn't thrill coach Tom Thibodeau but whose shooting prowess could help open the floor for Derrick Rose.
Michael Redd - Gery Woelfel
According to some league officials, Chicago, Boston, New York and Miami all have Redd on their radar.
So a few things appear clear to me based on the rumors:
The Bulls are likely doing their due diligence. There are a lot of players on the list that seem like fringe choices to look into which could imply they're worried that the surplus of money relative to talent will limit their options.
I think the Bulls are most likely to aim at players willing to accept a pay cut to come here for a chance to win a title, but they're casting a wide net over all of free agency.
I think their best chance to make a true splash is in the trade market using the combination of Watson, Korver, and Brewer with some picks and/or Mirotic thrown in.