Bulls Beat #328 - Swing and a miss

Bulls Beat #328 - Swing and a miss

Melo decids to stay with the Knicks, LeBron returns to Cleveland, and the Bulls settle for Pau Gasol. I break down the FA news and summer league game 1.

Bulls Beat #328 - Swing and a miss

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  • Despite your rant I refuse to share your hate for Lebron. Besides that good work Doug. However this might be the last podcast until October were you'll big news to talk about :/ .

  • Trade boozer for Eric Gordon, pray for one injury free playoff run! Teams only threat to a championship would be balky knees.

  • In reply to GarJR:

    Can't. Used cap room on Gasol, wouldn't have room for him if we traded Boozer and brought back a salary.

  • James and Anthony will never qualify for feel good stories nor for profiles in courage. One basically title hopping and the other giving up on titles.

    Here is to hoping the injury gods smile down upon us for a change and Gasol ages gracefullumy like Tim Duncan.

    Andcsince hope springs eternal but I am hoping the Bulls Summer League team has 4 players who make the roster. Snell, McDermott, Baristow, and Baron. Obviously, the last one on the list is a very long shot byt what the hey.

  • In reply to takdan:

    One good thing is, like 2010, aquiring Gasol and Mirotic with cap space means no reason not to carry a full 15 guys. That is especially true if one or two, ie Baron/Baristow, are non- guaranteed in case they make an in season deal. So I see them adding a room addition (I still think DJ is a possibility), plus at least 3 opportunistic vet minimums plus still
    have room for a developmental project or two. Give Thibbs lots of practice players.

  • As far as Lebron James goes, it's his life. Even though the decisions he's made throughout his career aren't popular or stick to the formula, in hindsight I agree with him for the most part. Cleveland is bitter because he left them but at the time everyone knew he needed to leave the Cavs, then Bulls fans starting hating because they started envisioning him playing for Chicago but he never once said he would play for the Bulls. So what people have is a bunch of unjustified hate for the man. It's hard to peg what his ultimate goal is but as a free agent he's free to do whatever the hell he wants.

    As for Gasol I'm happy with the signing. Carmelo Anthony was more of a pipe dream anyway, especially when you consider just how much money he would be giving up to play for Chicago who isn't that much better than the Knicks. With that being said I'll take Gasols contract and team depth over another year with Boozer anyday. Suddenly our front court looks very deep with Noah, Gasol, Taj, Mirotic, and Bairstow. Only other thing I think needs to be addressed is the wing position. I feel much more comfortable with Butler playing the 3, but I think we need to somehow get more athletic at the 2, and I don't think Butler or Snell is it. After that all that remains is Rose's health and we're all set.

  • The Bulls will have the best Front Court in the NBA with 4 guys with a starting caliber. I am optimistically betting on Snell, perhaps as a starer 2 as he will improve his defense and his shooting and ball handling from last year. Perhaps they can trade away Dunlevy to get DJ as a backup PG. We would add Kirk as well and Rose being the x-factor likely return to a near MVP level, we are back to 2011 depth team, competing against the Cavs and Pacers for the ECF. I like the odds this time around better than 2011, given the Superstars more diluted than the Big 3 era from Miami Heat.

    However, I am not so sure if we have a team to beat the WCF finalist. This is where another superstar would come handy.

  • In reply to BullsDynasty:

    So would you say Gasol is the backup C right now? With Noah and Taj starting? If so, he's going to dominate against other bench players. Or you could start Gasol and Noah, I suppose. Obviously you would use Gasol in late game situations where you needed offense and Taj-Noah when you need a defensive stop.

  • I am disappointed we did not get Carmelo. I think he has a skill that is definitely needed by the Bulls. And although you are hesitant about Drose's ability to return to his top flight status, I think the Bulls could have challenged Indiana at least for best in the East with Miami even this past year if the Bulls had Carmelo while Drose was hurt. So even a solid Drose with Carmelo would have put the Bulls as a major championship contender. But I don't fault Carmelo for not wanting to leave his home. He would have been a villain in NY just like Lebron was in Cleveland for leaving his home. And there would have been no clear superstar with a ring to offset the pressure as Wade did for Lebron so much over the last couple of years.

    Regarding the Bulls, I'm not sure how Gasol will work. We do need a shooting guard. I would have tried to get Lance Stephenson over Gasol. But I think Gasol will add offense in the post which is a need for the Bulls. If McDermott and Snell develop, we will contend and might even be Eastern Conference Champs. I just think we currently need an established offensive threat at the two guard or the small forward to get a championship. But we shall see how this all plays out and how Thibs uses McDermott, Snell, and possibly Mirota.

  • Overly cynical on Lebron, the stars happened to align for him to do what he wanted to do in his heart and what made sense for him on the court, can't blame him for that. Both Cleveland and Lebron got very lucky and things worked out for both of them.

    With Lebron signing only a 2 yr deal, both he and Durant will be free agents in the summer of 2016. Is it possible for every team in the league to clear max cap space for that summer, certainly NY and the Lakers will. If the Lakers renounce Kobe or he retires they would likely have room for both. I wonder how many teams will try to clear double max cap space.

    The Bulls might be able to make room for one by renouncing Noah and Taj, but will still be on the hook for one more year of Rose, hopefully, he will have played more than 49 games in the past 2 seasons.

    Things didn't turn out like we hoped but unless somebody was willing to do an S&T involving boozer, we really had no hope of doing much better than Mirotic and Gasol/(fill in the blank free agent for less than $6-7 million).

    As it stands we are adding 4 guys to a 48 win team that are as good as or better than everybody on that 48 win team not named Noah or Gibson. As always everything will depend on Rose's health, but we should compete for the best record in the east, although Lebron lead less talented Cav's teams to multiple 60 win seasons in his previous stint.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    May not have come out right, I wasn't meaning to be overly critical of LeBron, just am already tired of the 'what a great guy' for going home story.

    As you noted, he probably wanted to go home, but he did it because it offered him a better opportunity as well. He didn't sacrifice anything to go home. It's not some beautiful story. He made a good basketball and a good personal decision.

    There's nothing wrong with that. It was a good decision for him. I just don't need to hear every news outlet kiss his feet as if he cured cancer for it.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Lets face it Doug, you dislike Lebron only slightly less than I dislike Ben gordon and Carlos boozer, so you're always going to be a little less forgiving towards him. I don't think that you said anything the wrong way, thats just the way you feel about Lebron.

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    You started out w/ valid pts on LeBron and his ring chasing by going home, but to trade Andrew Wiggins for Kevin Love would be a mistake by the Cavs. Wiggins is a main attraction just like LeBron was in his rookie yr. A box office hit. Did anyone notice how many people came out just to watch him and Parker play in Las Vegas?

    If Mirotic shows that he's legit, Taj should become trade bait for a guard. Way too many front court players and not enough playmaking wing players, and point guards.

    One summer league gm doesn't make the player, but Snell showed much improvement in his game. All he needs is a shot of self confidence and his game will shine. I don't think he is Marquis Teague II aka Summer league phenom.

  • In reply to Michael Cunningham:

    Can't see Wiggens and LeBron playing well together, nor do I see Wiggins reaching his potential soon enough. Trading him for a top 10 player in the NBA who's still got five years left in his prime isn't a mistake IMO relative to their goals and present roster.

    I guess it depends how high you are on Wiggins though, I don't see him as a franchise cornerstone. I think Cleveland should be happy if he ever becomes as good as Love is right now. However, they'd have to wait 2-3 years for that, and I don't think that's really a great move given LeBron is ready to win immediately.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Kyrie Irving is way better than anybody that Lebron played with in Cleveland last time and they won over 60 games multiple times peeking at 66 which is top 20 all time. Wiggins might just be better as a rookie than anybody that Lebron played with the first time around in Cleveland. Dion Waiters is at least as good as anybody that he played with before. They should be really good this year and even better each of the next few seasons.

    I agree you have to do the Love for Wiggins deal, but they don't have to as badly as Minny needs to, and won't exactly be hurting if they don't. If I am Cleveland, I wait until the trade deadline, try to do it without Wiggins, and swoop in with Wiggins at the last second if somebody offers them something better. I don't do it now, unless Lebron tells me to.

  • In reply to Michael Cunningham:

    I don't remember Teague being all that hot in Las Vegas considering it was his second year - at least not like Snell was in game 1. ( I just remember Andrew Goudelac being the big star then not even getting a try out from the Bulls.) So hopefully its a better omen for Snell.

  • I believe the Bulls are a major trade away from being a championship quality team. I'm sorry but a team with Dunleavy and Butler on the wings just won't cut it even with the acquisition of Pau and the additions of the M&M boys.

    The Bulls were ready to trade a couple of first rounders to the Knicks in a S&T, along with good players, for Carmelo. Why shouldn't they make a similar commitment for a real difference maker (I.e. shot creator) in the trade market? Someone reported this morning that Dragic may be available. Perhaps there are others. The point being is that the Bulls need an upgrade. The fallback is the remaining FA market. I just can't stomach the idea of Hinrich and Mike James being on this team going forward.

  • In reply to hgarbell:

    Dragic is a very nice player but he is a starting caliber point guard, which wouldn't address our biggest need, a starting caliber SG. What about offering the room exception to Rodney Stuckey, he seems like a guy who needs to make a statement on a make good contract. Eric Gordon is probably the best guy available on the trade market, but is a huge risk, unless the Pelli's would move Tyreke Evans. As a Bulls fan would you trade Gibson & Dunleavy(maybe the deal works with Randolph instead of Dunleavy) for Evans.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    Yes, Dragic is a starting caliber point guard but he will play off the ball a lot with either Bledsoe or Thomas. IMO he could play the SG position on the Bulls as he is big enough to guard most twos.

    I was also thinking that Stuckey would be an upgrade, at least offensively. He is not much of a shooter but he can score. He also can handle the pg role at times. Assuming he could be had for the room exception, the Bulls would be foolish to opt for Klank over him. Unfortunately, Kirk has a photo of Paxson dressed in a bra and panties so this probably won't happen.

    Would I trade Gibson and Dunleavy for Tyreke? That's a tough one but I would surely consider it hard if the Bulls cannot come up with anything better in FA.

  • In reply to hgarbell:

    The problem is, even if you made a move to get Dragic, he wouldn't get the memo. :)

  • In reply to BigWay:

    Some interesting ideas. Bulls are definitely in a position to trade either Taj or Mirotic if they wanted to, though it's very difficult to find a trade partner who will give you equal value in return.

  • I was more than a bit surprised that the Wiz let Ariza go for "only" $8 million per, and then replaced him with Paul Pierce. However, this appears to be one of the first moves made specifically because of Durant. It is being reported that the Wiz are clearing cap space in the hope that he will want to return to his home town like Lebron did and didn't want to give Ariza more than a 2 year deal. The summer of 2016 has officially begun, get used to hearing about it.

  • Just saw on RealGM board that Deng signed with the Heat for two years at $20M. Too bad he didn't take the Bulls offer last year.

    Does this basically mean that we traded Luol Deng for Pau Gasol? If so, it was about eight years too late. (Well, at least we didn't have to throw Ben Gordon into the deal.)

  • In reply to hgarbell:

    Haha, yes, it more or less does mean that. Which raises an interesting question, who would you rather have on the team right now?

    Deng or Pau Gasol. I guess it isn't a fair comparison, because we tried to get Deng at an even better offer than what he signed for and he turned us down.

    However, I'm not upset about that, we had Gasol + a legitimate chance to add Carmelo Anthony that didn't pan out. In the end, I might take Deng over Gasol, I might also take Gasol because I think he adds more of what we need than Deng, but I'd definitely rather have had the opportunity to add a star even if it didn't work this time around.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    I don't think Gasol vs. Deng has ever been close and still isn't. Offensively talented big men are extremely difficult to find.

  • As puzzled as we all are about why the Bulls were so interested in Gasol, I am equally puzzled why Gasol chose the Bulls. If the Spurs and OKC were both interested in him and the Lakers offered more money, why did he pick the Bulls.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    I'd imagine money + combination of a chance to win + likes Chicago's market. There have been rumors he wanted to play in Chicago for several years. He probably wants a chance to win, good money, and a big city. Chicago offers all three, OKC and San Antonio only offer one, and the Lakers offered two.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    If they are squeezing both Pau and Mirotec into a bit over $12 mil. of cap space (after a Boozer amnesty and dumping Smith and Randolph's contracts), that would mean only giving Pau around $7.5m. That is a bit more than SA or OKC had to offer but a lot less than what LA supposedly offered. If they did something like that we got an excellent deal and almost got Pau and Mirotic for Deng's money. Now if you hear the Bulls also dumped Dunleavy and/or Snell before we officially hear any terms .... its time for the crying towels to come out.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Yea, apparently, one of the TV commentators mentioned that Gasol wanted the lifestyle that a large city offers, so I guess that ruled out OKC and SA, and the Lakers are not contending for a while, so I guess that in this one instance, we won by default.

  • Kirk back as a backup PG. Bulls roster coming to place. Mirotic will be next on the line. Hopefully something magic will happen and we can still land another wing/ ball handler/ Point Guard. DJ would be great since he knows our system, but has flaws as it was exposed in playoffs.

  • In reply to BullsDynasty:

    No surprise. The major issue is whether the Bulls had to use the room exception on him. If they did, then we know that a blood test would reveal that Kirk is Reinsdorf's biological issue from a fling he had in the balcony of the State-Lake Theater.

    Where is Maury Povich when you need him?

  • In reply to hgarbell:

    Totally agree, that better not be for the room exception, give him the minimum and promise him a job for life with the team if he wants it.

  • I think the most aggravating offseason transaction is seeing Afflalo traded for so little with the Bulls not getting in on it. Everyone knew Melo was a long shot, nobody expected LeBron to come here. Stephenson is a major roll of the dice that the Bulls don't seem inclined to make, and I find it hard to blame them as I think it not likely to work out.

    Meanwhile, adding Afflalo and Gasol to the current team, OK now that's a good team (probably over the cap). If you come at teams with Afflalo, Rose, Gasol, say a shooter like McDermott and you throw in either Noah or Taj to rebound and that gives other teams problems in terms of who to guard. (I'm assuming there's no room for Mirotic's salary or he could even be a fifth shooter). Just adding Gasol? Meh. Yeah they'll have a deep front court which is an asset, but it's hardly a dominant front court that would lead this team to a championship, and it's definitely not coming out of the back court with Butler as the starting SG, which is all they have right now. I thought they could have used Pierce, who just signed with the Wizards of all teams for the mid-level exception.

    So unless they have a trade up their sleeves, which I highly doubt, this is basically it for the Bulls offseason and I would have been pretty satisfied with Afflalo and Gasol but as is, it kinda sucks.

  • In reply to Roman F:

    I agree that Afflalo seemed like the best pickup that wasn't a fantasy, however, getting Afflalo would have precluded getting Gasol or Mirotic, you could not have gotten all 3 unless we traded away significant salary in the Afflalo deal(Dunleavey and Snell, at least).

    Would you rather have Afflalo and Mirotic, or Gasol and Mirotic, tough call, but we definitely needed a starting SG more than another(aging) big. Maybe we should offer Denleavey and Snell to Denver for Afflalo(throw in Anthony Randolph while we're at it(ha ha)), although after last night maybe the Bulls still think that Snell is the answer at SG.

    Speaking of Randolph, I wonder if the Bulls chose to keep him over Smith in the salary cap dump to Dallas, obviously dumping Randolph would have freed up about $900K more than Smith.

  • Its official, Mirotic will be joining the Bull's next year. As disappointed as some may be at the moves (or lack of) this offseason, a haul of Pau, Mirotic, McDermott, and a healthy (fingers crossed) Rose is a pretty substantial upgrade over last year's roster. Get excited Bull's fans!

  • In reply to Motoman:

    I am absolutely ecstatic at these additions. We added two super young absolute snipers from deep who are both tall, especially Mitrocic who teams will have great difficulty getting a hand in his face at the perimeter. Mitrocic and Pau are also incredible passers.

  • We can still trade Randolph. I believe his contract is at 1.9M, which is above minimum and we can get another wing player (maybe). I have a gut feeling that this is the last piece of the puzzle. I am excited for the roster and I think we are going to be much better than last year and even better than our 2011 roster (with a healthy Rose of course). Go Bulls!!!

  • So in the final analysis, going back to the Deng trade, we have essentially traded Deng @ 3yrs/$30 million for Gasol @ 2-3 yrs/$6.5-10 million.

    We still don't have Gasol's exact numbers, and probably won't until Wednesday night(boozer amnesty deadline). I know that I am going to puke watching Gasol in transition and on D, but I was never a big Deng fan, so I guess I make that deal and hope for the best. If we move Butler to starting SF he gives you most everything Deng does, and Gasol gives us more on offense than either boozer or Deng, especially in terms of post offense. Hopefully, it is 2yrs/$13 million.

    Just heard Mirotic, 3ys/$17 million, assuming that includes $2.5 million signing bonus.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    Didn't see the comments above suggesting the same.

  • After completing his contract buyout with Real Madrid, Mirotic will be paid out of the Bulls' midlevel exception.

    -Per Woj Yahoo

  • In reply to Chicagosportsguru:

    If thats true, then somehow the Bulls stay over the cap after amenesty on boozer? Which makes no sense as to how we sign Gasol. Don't think we can use the MLE on Mirotic before we amnesty boozer, then use amnesty and the resultant cap space, that would seem like a serious loophole.

  • Its official the Bulls waste the full room exception on Hangdog 2yrs/$5.7 million, player, not team option for second season. Almost eliminates all the joy of the upcoming boozer amnesty. Like I always say never miss an opportunity to overpay Kirk Hinrich.

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