Derrick Rose said the Bulls are looking for a two guard, who will it be?

While there were many interesting nuggets of information to pull out of the Derrick Rose interview on youtube, the two that might be most interesting to me were related to the makeup of the team. I was left with an impression that he wasn't too happy about the break up of the bench mob and that the team promised to get him a better perimeter creator to play along with him.

While the Bulls like to play things conservatively in terms of both finances and risk taking with the roster, they'll need to be careful not to kill the goose that laid the golden egg here. Much like Jordan, Derrick Rose expects to win championships. He was reportedly in a month+ long depression after losing to the Heat two seasons ago, and I find it unlikely he tolerates the team being stagnant for the next five years.

Rose appears to have been told that the team is looking for a long term fit at two guard to put next to him, so the obvious question now is who can the Bulls get to play that role to help Derrick out in the backcourt?

The Bulls passed on O.J. Mayo

So interestingly, the Bulls could likely have signed O.J. Mayo whom might have fulfilled many of the things they'd look for in that guard and passed. Mayo signed for just two years with Dallas at a fairly cheap rate that the Bulls could have topped by turning their Korver trade into a three way deal with Memphis.

Mayo's been a guy that I, and many others, have thought could have been landed for a reasonable deal who has the skills the Bulls need. He's a solid defender, shooter, ball-handler, and shot creator with plenty of athleticism. He's not particular efficient player and needs to work at improving off the ball, but the Bulls need a guy with his strengths, and there aren't many players with them. Particularly ones not breaking the bank.

There were plenty of risk factors involved with Mayo which is why he wasn't breaking the bank, but with one of the few options that might fit into the Bulls salary structure gone, where do they turn to now?

Tyreke Evans is the next O.J. Mayo

And that might not be a good thing.

Much like Mayo, Evans took the NBA by storm his rookie season. Much like Mayo he had fans of his team thinking future superstar after that year. Then much like Mayo he struggled mightily his second year and had a decline. Unlike Mayo, Evans rebounded in his third season to bring his level of play back up significantly, but still fell well shy of his rookie accomplishments and expectations.

While Evans isn't likely to become available for a five million dollar price tag in free agency, my guess is that the Kings are second guessing committing big long term money to him and will look to move him at the trade deadline. A trade of Rip Hamilton for Evans matches salary and keeps Chicago under their hard cap for the season. The only question would be whether or not the Bulls could throw in enough Sweeteners to make a deal make sense.

Trading for Evans might cost the Bulls the Charlotte pick as well as another of their firsts, and even then it may or may not be enough. Given the skills he's shown, it wouldn't be surprising if there was a team that fell in love with him from afar and significantly outbid what the Bulls are able to bid.

It also may prove challenging to come to terms with Evans as a free agent. O.J. Mayo played the free agent musical chairs game (tm Coldfish) and lost. He was a guy who could have easily gotten well over the MLE in the right year, but there wasn't the right team out there. Will Evans also play the game and lose?

Mayo was also forced into to taking the best offer he could find because the Grizzlies pulled his QO. If he were in Evans situation with a new team that offered the QO to retain matching rights then he could simply play the game twice [and likely would have]. In other words, if the Bulls trade for Evans then they need to do so assuming they're paying him a significant salary as a free agent, because it's far less likely he'll lose at free agency musical chairs.

If not Evans than who?

James Harden is a pipe dream entertained by many Bulls fans. However, he'll be restricted [OKC likely matches any offer], and the Bulls aren't under the cap to make an offer anyway. There's no feasible way I can come up with that lands Harden on the Bulls.

There really isn't much else out there. Certainly not in the realm of guys who might be available via trade or free agency and fit within what the Bulls can do legally. In fact, if it isn't Evans [and it probably won't be], then the Bulls best bet for adding that talented SG might be the draft.

However, when the Bulls had a chance to add Marshon Brooks, a guy who might have fit those needs but slipped significantly, they passed. While Brooks may not pan out at all, the odds of a better prospect to fill their needs slipping to where the Bulls pick are pretty low. The odds of finding a stud SG [or at any position really] outside the top 10 are fairly low overall.

Which means the Bulls may need to look to trade up in the draft. However, they had that possibility this off-season and passed on it too, preferring to keep the existing core players.

Have the Bulls made a promise they can't keep?

It certainly looks like management has made assurances to Rose that they'll get him more help, but it's hard to see how they back them up. So far, they've passed on the obvious opportunities to do. Those decisions to pass may prove out to all be good basketball decisions. That's why management gets the big bucks.

It's easy to complain at every move the Bulls didn't make, but this year's acquisition is frequently next year's bad contract. The Bulls may be right to pass on Mayo and keep Jimmy Butler over trading up for Marshon Brooks. However, there are limited opportunities to get perimeter players that fit the Bulls needs, and I'd bet if the Bulls have no more than two more off-seasons to improve the team significantly before it starts to fester with Derrick.

With Mayo off the table, the question becomes who's on the table that the Bulls can look to? While many Bulls fans have their hearts set on James Harden, the odds of Chicago luring him from Oklahoma City are next to none. They don't have max salary room to offer him as a free agent, and OKC may simply match such an offer if they did anyway.

The next guy


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  • Demar Derozan? Gar raved about him pretty heavy when his name was brought up on draft night on the radio. I think he may be on the last year of his rookie contract too.

  • In reply to Flashsonic:

    RFA. My guess is he will be available now that TOR drafted Terrence Ross with the 8th pick...something the Bulls could have probably gotten if they traded Deng to TOR (they were desperate for a SF).

  • In reply to YouBlewwIt:

    and they got Landry Fields for 3years and $20 million. DeRozan has to be available. Hamilton and a first should get that done. In the short term he is better than what we've had, but is he really a long term fit.

    Not sure where I would rank him, but likely behind both Evans and Mayo. Maybe Mayo has fallen behind him, given the less than stellar offer that he got in free agency.

  • Can Krause come back swing a trade in next year's draft for a good perimeter player available in the lottery? Perhaps a top five pick. As much as I like him, I'm looking at Deng. It's not enough to have Deng as your second best player IMO. The only player I'd prefer to keep is Noah. I don't see any free agents to be that excite me.

  • In reply to Jmax:

    Deng has got to go, we all know it, but the bulls butt brothers dont'

  • with the Bulls totally dedicated to a self imposed hard cap, its hard to imagine they add a young shooting guard without subtracting someone else. So maybe they decide to get rid of Deng and replace him with a 20 point scoring shooting guard while trying to patch the 3 spot with a veteran defensive role player that can score some. The Bulls are always thinking cash first, winning last so lets not get our hopes up. Who knows, maybe they think Kirk Hinrich is that shooting guard that can get them 20 points a game, yes they are that delusional.

  • Paxson probably thinks he already addressed the promise with the Captain Klank deal. Idiot...

    Evans would be a really poor fit I sure hope its not him. Lazy with questionable attitude, needs the ball to be effective and can't shoot from distance to save his life. The last two should automatically exclude him from the conversation.

    I just hope Rose blows up on management sooner than later because they blow and need to be called out on multiple fronts. Paxson's ultra conservative style is holding them back and Reinsdorfs penny pinching ways aren't helping either. Rose's prime window is probably only the next six years and the Bulls look like they are going to squander most if not all of it by fielding mediocre talent with overachieving tendencies. Time for new management. Failure to secure Taj or trade him better be the last straw for these bozos.

  • In reply to Chad:

    Riiiight. They should do like the Knicks and overspend on every FA with a heart beat. At least we couldn't call them cheap, right? Who should they get, then? The only available guy with any talent is Evans, and you just pooh-pooh'd that one. I know, Dwayne Wade. He fits and Miami is totally ready to move on. If the bulls can't get Wade, they aren't trying and they suck!!!...

  • In reply to bullshooter:

    No they suck because they go for guys that don't fit their system and are old and on the decline. Nazr, Kirk and Vlad Rad. I guess that should excite me? I would have taken a flier on OJ Mayo, Jerryd Bayless, Nick Young or Aaron Brooks before turning to a Kirk at 8 mil a year. Not to mention bring in Malcom Thomas over Nazr since they are the same height and Nazr blows anyways.

    Complete failure IMO. Especially not even getting in on Dwight Howard! That can't be justified. They suck because they are clueless and consistently waste assets (ala Gordon, Asik and soon to be Taj). Don't be some mindless homer that assumes everything your GM does is awesome and they must be right because they make so much. No I don't advocate free spending I am no idiot. Free Agents are usually overpriced.

    Only pickup this offseason I think fits our system is Nate Rob. But would have rather had Bayless.

  • In reply to Chad:

    8 for two years...

  • In reply to Chad:

    Gordon was never an asset, he was just someone waiting to be a bad contract only moveable for another bad contract, i.e. Maggette.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    If you think the best sixthman in the game and 20+ ppg scorer on the last year of a rookie deal is a worthless asset then you sir have no business commenting on what the Bulls should do.

  • In reply to Chad:

    History has proven me to be correct, and you as usual incorrect.

    Just as I predicted at the time, Ben Gordon has been a huge bust from the moment that he signed his contract, untradeable except for other garbage. That by definition is not an asset, it is a liability.

    He was nowhere near the best 6th man in the league when he departed, in fact he wasn't even a 6th man at the time.

    If the Bulls could have gotten something for him, they would have traded him, but nobody on earth(except for the disaster that used to be Joe Dumars) wanted to pay him more than what he turned down from the Bulls.

    You are only an asset if you can be exchanged for something of value, and unless you think that shit has value, Ben Gordon has proven that he is not an asset.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    You clearly lack the basic understanding of the principles of economics. Supply (players) and Demand (teams with available money) create prices. Players are paid based on past performance. Ben got paid a lot and hence "HAD" a lot of value. You can say he sucks now and is a negative asset currently but you cannot say that he had no value while still on his rookie deal. That is ignorant.

    That said I would have traded him as I didn't want to pay him a big contract. You could have easily have shipped him off for a pick or two the summer before he left. Paxson has a long history of lacking the vision to see what is right around the corner or to plan for what will be coming.

  • I like Demar Derozan.

  • The franchise that brought you Bogans and Ripster is now going to go out and get a solid, in their prime SG huh?

    How about this, rather then fantasize about a respectable starting SG, let's just avoid any possible scorers whatsoever, and draft a guard who is so horrid shooting the ball that he'll be out of the league in three years. Sound good? All-right!

  • In reply to RoadWarrior:

    Yeah I will believe dumb and dumber can land a great sg when I see it. Hope Rose isn't holding his breath on that one because it ain't happening!

  • andre iguodala

  • In reply to NomNom:

    Would love him, but...

    1) I think he resigns with DEN

    2) If he doesn't, it will cost a lot of money

    3) Iggy+Deng would be great against Wade+Lebron

    4) But swapping Deng for Iggy is only a slight upgrade, doesn't put us over the top.

  • 2013 FA Shooting Guards:

    Monta (ETO) - Available for $10+mil
    Iggy (ETO) - I think resigns with DEN
    Tyreke (RFA) - Will cost at least $8mil (what SAC paid Thornton)
    KMart - Does everything the Bulls need, except for defense
    Harden (RFA) - If OKC moves him, it will be for top-3 pick
    DeRozan (RFA) - Could be available w/ Terrence Ross

    2014 FA Shooting Guards:

    Wade (ETO) - Probably resigning w/ MIA
    Kobe - Probably resigning w/ LAL or retiring
    Stuckey - Will probably be available at $6-8mil

  • In reply to YouBlewwIt:

    & you forgot Steph Curry at the end of this year, restricted. I say DeRozan.

  • In reply to ChiRy:

    Let Deng show he's healthy (enough), trade him & future #1's, Charlotte if need be, amnesty Booz, resign Taj & go after him.

  • In reply to ChiRy:

    They should have traded him this offseason. He isn't getting surgery and will likely show he is unhealthy while struggling all season as he did in the olympics shooting sub 40%.

  • In reply to ChiRy:

    Curry is a PG. He can shoot it, but he's bony, gets pushed around, and doesn't play defense.

    I don't think he is the fit at SG.

  • In reply to YouBlewwIt:

    You could definitely argue that he is a combo guard at the least. Would he be part of an ideal backcourt? No. But your not getting an ideal SG. If you think you can, tell us how. Curry can shoot the lights out, drive on 2s, could share ballhandling with Rose, isolate, distribute, and for a bony guy with no defense, has been among the league leaders in steals per game all 3 years. The guy creates fast breaks. I could think of a lot worse solutions, even unreasonable ones.

    I say DeRozan is the best fit, but I'd take Curry.

  • In reply to YouBlewwIt:

    I know he kind of sucks on defense but Monte Ellis would instantly transform the Bulls into an uptempo offense. If coach Thibs can coach some D to Ellis, watch out league. I like DeRozen the most but doubt the Raptors are ready to cough him up yet. Kmart remains an intriguing fit for the right price???

  • In reply to YouBlewwIt:

    I've always liked Ellis as a much better player than Ben Gordon. He won't exactly be a spring chicken for his next contract though.

    Is DeRozan at half the price a better fit?

    Harden is going to end up fairly to massively overpaid as a max contract starter.

    To bad that we cannot combine the Korver TPE with Hamilton, not the Bulls would do that even if it was legal.

  • The Bulls can't afford to sit on assets, dreaming that it's going to be the next big thing. I think GarPax should contact Denver and offer them the Bobcats pick for Jordan Hamilton. He has good size at 6'8", the ability to create his own offense, and Hamilton is only 21 years old.

    Personally, I'm not convinced that the Bulls will get a better talent even if they hold on to the pick until 2016.

  • In reply to JimmyBulls:

    That's a horrible trade.

    Every team has a young 'potential' SG on their roster that isn't getting any playing time.

    We don't know what Hamilton is, so we don't need to give up the CHA pick for him.

    If anything, we should go after Wilson Chandler, now that DEN has Gallo and Iggy.

  • fb_avatar

    Poorly written blog. Try not to stop in the middle of writing the next one....

  • It's Hinrich. It's always been Hinrich. The Bulls Hinriched the Hinrich out of this Hinrich.

  • Tyreke Evans can't throw a ball into the ocean. All his scoring comes at the rim after he dominates the ball ... doesn't seem like a player that helps to open it up for Rose at all. Unless the plan is to turn Rose into the SG of the combo and have him play more off the ball and spot up. So the idea of Evans doesn't overly excite me.

    Hopefully the SG they've told Rose they're trying to get is Shabazz Muhammad. Tank tank tank baby. If Rose really wants to win he'll prove it by sitting out the year.

  • In reply to Shakes:

    Why not go for Jabari Parker while we're at it.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    1 year you can just say Rose isn't ready and not make it obvious. I'm sure David Stern would find some rule to stop the Bulls holding him out for 2 years.

  • In reply to Shakes:

    How can the Bulls tell Rose they are trying to get Muhammad? When ever he decides to come out he will be a 1-3 pick, If Rose site out the entire year the Bulls still wont be a lottery bound team.

  • In reply to BullySixChicago:

    With the loss of the bench mob I'd only give the Bulls a 50/50 chance of making the playoffs. Of course that assumes they try to make the playoffs.

    But you sit Rose out, you make Deng get surgery during the season, you exagerate Noah and Boozer's inevitable injuries, you trade away Rip (they want to anyway to stay under the cap) and Gibson (since they don't want to pay him) and there's every chance the Bulls can get a real shot at a top 3 pick.

  • I'd be ok with anyone of these picks if it were possible, to aquire any of the 4 without giving up anything but Daft pck's & $$$.

  • Well the most important statement in your article was identified to me is that the Bulls have told Rose what they are going to do. Secondly he is listening and even having somewhat of a interest in the makeup of the team.

    All these ideas that who they should get is interesting but it will be someone that Rose would agree to playing with and a player that could impact the Bulls title chance from a chance to a great chance.

    Everybody is dreaming about Harden which would be the clear asset that Bulls fans think would push them over the hump. OKC will have to go into the salary cap payment scale because he will demand as much as the other starters are getting. Some have suggested that he may give them a home team break, If i were his agent no way in hell will that happen. He (Harden) has already stated he would lie to play in Sunland.

    Bulls will make way for the ability to pay Harden with all these one year contracts and still having the amnesty clause to use. The Bulls will be a major player for that significant 2 guard that Rose wants

  • I don't think the Bulls have planned this through enough, because if they thought they did, they did a horrible job.

    Even if the Bulls let Deng walk and Amnesty Boozer, if Taj gets his extension at $10mil per year, the Bulls wouldn't even have enough cap space to offer one of the top 2014 FAs a max contract.

    2014-15 Payroll
    Rose - $17.8
    Noah - $12.2
    Taj - $10
    Butler - $2
    Teague - $1.1
    2013 Pick - $1
    2014 Pick - $1

    $45.1mil, with approximately $13mil in cap space.

    If this is the case, the Bulls will probably end up resigning Deng for that amount.

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