I get it. Carlos Boozer's lousy on defense. He turns the ball over on offense. He shrinks in the moment. He's inconsistent. He's not worth his salary. He's a bumslayer who only performs against lousy teams, and he'll let you down in the playoffs. Don't trade Carlos Boozer.
The anatomy of a Boozer trade is about money
When making a trade, there is a give and take. No team just trades you better players for worse players unless their management is completely incompetent, so usually a trade falls into one of these categories:
Two teams trade similar caliber players with similar commitments financially, but they have different needs and both trade from strength to shore up a weakness. This is actually a fairly uncommon trade, but a Boozer trade does not qualify. The Bulls don't have an excess of big men. In fact, if they don't get a big man back in a boozer trade, they're screwed.
One team trades a player with more immediate talent for prospects that might be better in the future but won't help as much right now. No one is giving up prospects for Carlos Boozer. In fact, if a trade like this were to be made, the Bulls would be the type of team looking to get better more immediately since they're close to a title not looking to get considerably worse immediately to get pedestrian prospects later.
One team trades a player with a large salary possibly with sweetners for a player with a lesser salary commitment or lesser salary player that's considerably worse. In other words, the team trading the large salary player gets considerably worse in either the long or short term in order to save money. Ding, ding, ding! We have a winner.
Do you want the Bulls to get considerably worse to save money?
Look, I'm not a huge Carlos Boozer fan, but he can score at times. He's won two games straight for the Chicago Bulls with his offensive effort and one was against the Heat. He's a guy who likely improves his efficiency once Derrick Rose is back because he plays much better with some space created by someone else.
I don't want to count on Boozer to play well against the Heat in the playoffs, but I'd rather count on Boozer than Kris Humphries which is likely the best case scenario. The Bulls are going to come out of any Boozer trade saving money and worse on the court.
This isn't a team that needs to save money. This is a team that needs to show some commitment to its fans. If you take the accumulated earnings of the bottom 25 earners in the NBA and add them together they probably don't add up to the money the Bulls will make this season. The only two teams in the league that can make more money than Chicago are the Knicks and Lakers.
The Bulls are minting money. It's the ultimate slap in the face to fans when they look at trades to save money. If the Bulls could move Boozer in a way that makes the team better, then go for it, but that's not going to happen.
Hamilton trade coming?
It looks likely that a Rip Hamilton trade is in the works. The Bulls picked up Daequan Cook off waivers and have absolutely no need for Cook unless someone else is cleared off the roster. The most obvious person the Bulls would like to dump from the roster is Rip Hamilton who's owed one million next season if Chicago Buys out his contract and could get the Bulls under the tax this season if they dump him for nothing.
That said, my Boozer theory applies to Rip Hamilton. If the Bulls can dump him to a team willing to take on his salary by the Bulls giving them cash to cover it, then by all means trade Rip Hamilton with some cash to get him off the books, potentially avoid the tax, and avoid the repeater tax later.
However, you can't give up a 1st rounder just to dump Rip Hamilton. The Bulls have been too good at getting quality players with their late 1st round picks to do that. Beyond their overall drafting ability, if the Bulls want to seriously manage finances going forward than they need a steady stream of 1st rounders to come in and contribute.
Keeping guys like Taj Gibson on cheap contracts for four years is what allows you to balance out your salary. The Bulls didn't have to pay Ronnie Brewer four million dollars because Jimmy Butler is here making 1 million. In two seasons, they'll have developed Marquis Teague to the point where they likely won't need to bring in a back up PG making four million because Teague will be there making a shade over a million.
The Bulls have consistently shown an ability to get rotation players with picks 20+ and in doing so, they are giving themselves an extra five to 10 million in headroom salary cap wise.
Not only would a Rip + a pick for nothing trade weakens the present team, but it also weakens the future team and puts them in a tougher financial position to try and fill in those rotation spots with free agents instead of draft picks.
We'll see how it goes, but I'm already bracing for management to deliver the ultimate bitch slap to fans by giving up assets and weakening the team further in order to save money on a team that will likely make more this season than the bottom 25 earning teams combined.
Filed under: Trade rumors