Using the MMLE on a non-point guard

Using the MMLE on a non-point guard

In recent days, most available point guards have come off the market. Cory Jospeh went to Toronto, Mo Williams is going to Cleveland, Jeremy Lin is still angling to land in Dallas, and what remains are slim pickings for the Bulls.

Because of that, it may be time to think best player available, instead of looking at need.

While he theoretically should be worth more in the open market, Gerald Green is still out there, and with the Bulls still possessing the MMLE, it's worth giving him a call to hear what he's looking for, and if he'd be interested in joining a playoff team in need of a wing.

Green is a superb athlete who can play both the two and the three, knock down a tremendous amount of three-pointers, play in transition, and has the ability to put up a lot of points in limited minutes. During his two-year stay with Phoenix, Green knocked down 341 long-balls at 38% and averaged a more-than-impressive 14 points in 24.2 minutes per game.

It's partly due to those numbers that signing Green to the MMLE seems to be a bit of a reach. Scorers like him, especially ones that versatile, aren't just hanging around for cheap, but giving that he's still on the market, it's worth placing a call.

As for the back-up point guard issue? To use the frequent Gar Forman term "internal improvements", I'd look at expanding E'Twaun Moore's role. At this point, the available back-up point guards out there simply aren't worth the MMLE, but that doesn't mean it shouldn't be used. Quality is always an asset, regardless of position, and since Moore projects as being the better player than the remaining point guard options still available, I would have no problem handing him the job and running with it.

In fact, running a perimeter rotation consisting of Rose, Butler, Dunleavy, McDermott, Snell, Green, and Moore projects as being highly effective. You have scoring, you have defense, you have two-way players, and you have spacing. You could mix and match like crazy, running a great amount of them together. Want to go defensive? Roll out Moore, Butler, and Dunleavy. Want to go for speed? Rose, Butler, and Green will run you out of the gym. Want to focus on the long-ball? Moore, Green, and McDermott/Dunleavy looks pretty good.

And if you want to go extra crazy, you could ask Aaron Brooks to come back as a three-point specialist to round out the bench, assuming he hasn't had any offers.

The general point I'm making is that there are players out there who could bring something of value, and targeting them with the MMLE is worth a try. Even if it isn't the permanent solution to the back-up point guard position, it's a hell of a lot better acquiring quality instead of settling for players like Will Bynum or Mike James.

It's July 7th, and there hasn't been word on any potential free agent acquisition. The most compatible point guards are off the table, most to a salary the Bulls wouldn't even afford in the first place, so now's the time to think outside the box. Think of the rest of free agency like a draft, and make a big board. Then chase the guys with talent and value. Sure, it would have been better finding a legitimate pure point guard to man the back-up spot instead of relying on Moore who is a combo-guard, but this is the situation right now anyway, so instead of sulking around and considering lesser options, overall depth and quality should now be the goal.

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  • First things first though, waive Kirk Hinrich if you can't trade him. He makes our team worse on offense and on defense. That way we have three roster spots open. Assuming Nazr and Brooks don't come back. Bairstow is not really a guy to keep and we don't really need him to sit on the end of the bench. Nazr would be a better option than him to a bench warmer spot. But generally I hope that we go with players that have some sort of potential at the end of the bench.

    Austin Rivers deserves a call IO, offer him the MMLE. What about Donald Sloan, give him a call if he would take our vet min. And then I would see who on our or some other SL team stands out and give out a few more than normal training camp invites.

  • In reply to rodman:

    Not a bad call, Rivers is still unproven, but he showed some signs under his dad toward the end last season and in the playoffs. Can't really see him leaving home, though. For one year it would be a no brainer, but 2 or 3 could be problematical.

  • Gerald Green looks like the best FA option right now. I recall talk about the Bulls trading to get him near the deadline last season.

    Sell him with the fact that many 2nd tier players who signed with the Bulls for a season got bigger contracts after - like Korver, Augustine, Bellinelli, and even Dunleavy. If Green has a great season with the Bulls, he should be in line for a big contract the following season when the cap balloons.

  • In reply to rustyw:

    Like Mort said, with the money being thrown around this summer, Green seems like he's out of our league cap wise. Anyone know why Phoenix isn't acting like retaining him is a high priority?

  • There is a rumor that the Bulls are currently exploring a sign and trade with the Lakers involving Jeremy Lin and Jordan Hill, who were both unrestricted free-agents. Bulls are prepared to send one of its players to the Lakers in exchange for either Lin or All-Rookie teamer Jordan Clarkson. It's unclear the identity of the player the Bulls are willing to move, but all indications are pointing to Taj Gibson as the odd man out.

    Considering Dallas is a Lin's front-runner and apparently Lin's first choice, I would be surprised if the Bulls could get this deal done.

  • In reply to BullsDynasty:

    It would be fun to see the dynamic PF combo of Taj and Boozer reunited.

    This article actually says that Taj "can easily become one of the best power forwards in the league if given more playing time." TRADE HIM WHILE THAT PERCEPTION STILL EXISTS! I think Taj is a legit starter but one of the best? Ha ha.

  • In reply to Roman F:

    Not sure that the hole is going to be invited back by the Lakers, but that sure would piss Taj off and ruin his homecoming. I also don't see their need for Taj as they signed Brandon Bass in free agency and have Julius Randle last years #1 pick coming back from injury.

    The Bulls resigning of Aaron Brooks, likely puts and end to the speculation on this deal. Although, the deal could save the Bulls cap money, depending on what Lin signs for. It wouldn't do so if both Lin and Jordan Hill were in the deal, which didn't sound right from the get go.

  • In reply to BullsDynasty:

    They would be stupid to do that trade, there's no need to trade a starter for a couple bench guys unless it's Jamal Crawford!

  • Andrew Goudelock is the guy I heard they wanted to sign. No idea if it was true or not. He has been playing in Europe for the last few years as one of the best players on one of the best teams. I think he has at least one MVP over their and he put up 30 against the Spurs in some kind of friendly match, or whatever they called it. Kobe nicknamed him "litle mamba" or something when he was with the Lakers, I guess because Goudelock was so much like himself. He seems very worthy of a contract, but he seems to feel very jilted by the league so it may take a lot to convince him to leave his comfortable situation.

  • In reply to PaBullfan:

    Found the source of the Goudelock story. It is, they say that the Bulls will sign him to a 2year/ 2+mil. contract with the second year a player option. My biggest doubt of this story is that it was posted June 28th. I have to beleave that if it were true, it would have been known by now. I'm disapointed, I think he could have been a strong addition to the team.

  • Isn't Moore more of a SG than PG? Is he a PG at all?

    If Brooks is still available, I think he's probably the most sensible option. Will come cheap, played well, fits in. I know he disappeared in the playoffs but I don't see anyone better unless you want Klank as the primary backup PG.

    If there's a taker for Taj, get it done. Always liked him but you can't take away from Mirotic's minutes and development to placate a role player on the wrong side of 30. Portis will also develop faster if he's playing 8-10 minutes a night off the bench.

  • In reply to Roman F:

    Moore is not really a point guard. I don't understand why some fans are clamoring for him to be our back-up to Rose (perhaps only to eliminate the nightmare scenario of Hinrich being the back-up). Has value as a long-armed defender. Not a great shooter but can get hot at times as we saw last year.

    I'm also getting the feeling that when all is said and done, Brooks will be back in the fold. If Gar was "excited" to have Klank back he should be positively orgasmic at the thought of Brooks returning.

    As to Goudelock, I was sort of surprised that he didn't get a roster spot on the Bulls after his impressive summer league performance a couple of years back. He is basically a shooting guard in a point guard's body but he would have helped the Bulls 10x more than the goggled ghoul from Kansas.

  • In reply to Roman F:

    Brooks played well. You have got to be kidding! Did you watch the last 35 games or so? Terrible...,both ways. And can't run an offense.

  • In reply to Roman F:

    Agree with you on all fronts. Moore is a tweener/combo guard, a PG only on an emergency basis. Of course any playing time for the Hangdog, would seem to constitute a major emergency.

    Not sure who is left at this point other than Brooks. I still wouldn't mind finding a way to trade for Augustin from OKC.

    Liked Taj a lot from day one, a little less so the past couple of years when he became a little full of himself. Niko and Portis make Taj totally expendable. Better to exploit his value while people are still over valuing him, if they(NBA people) are indeed still doing so.

    However, I would not rush to move him, especially if his current injury status hampers his value. Maybe, we get a better deal for him at the trade deadline.

  • Well looks like Aaron Brooks is back with the bulls on a 1 year veteran minimum contract. Looks like the MMLE is still in play and I think Gerald Green would be the perfect guy to use it on. I wholeheartedly endorse his signing but I don't know if the Bulls have it in them. Everything to date has been safe and predictable and bring back the band theme to them. A second team of Brooks, Green, McDermott, Gibson, Portis would be athletic and versatile. I'm not a huge Brooks fan but he can hit a crazy shot when needed.

    Another option might be to go down a trade route. With the Clippers losing out on Jordan and picking up two back court pieces in Pierce and Stephenson, their backcourt is mighty crowded. I wouldn't mind sending Pau Gasol to them for either JJ Reddick or Jamal Crawford. In this scenario, we could use the MMLE on a big man.

  • In reply to ripiceman:

    Thank u someone who knows bball sounds great I'm all for it.

  • In reply to ripiceman:

    I doubt that the Clips have any interest in trading Reddick as they look at Lance as a 6th man and a one year experiment. Pierce was signed as an emergency starter at SF(since they don't have any left) and a small ball PF, not as a member of the backcourt. Also not sure about Reddick's fits with the Bulls unless Butler moves back to SF.

    Never cared for Crawford all that much, and at this point, I'm not sure how the Clippers feel about him either. Naturally, I'm all for trading Gasol, but Crawford doesn't really seem like enough for what some people(O.K., one person) think is one of the top 15 players in the world, or is it top 65.

  • Unless there is a steal of the century deal out there that we haven't heard about, I could see the Bulls passing on using the MMLE, since it will cost them $8-9 million in actual cash this year and further reduce their already less than max cap space for next summer. Not sure, but don't MMLE deals have to be for at least 2 years?

    It is amazing how quickly the MLE and MMLE went from being a valuable rotation player to nearly completely worthless. Teams appear to be paying guys this summer at what the MLE will be next summer and beyond, $7-8-9 million per.

    It will be interesting to see every Bulls fan but one clamoring for Gasol to opt out of his contract next summer so that we can maximize our cap space. Not unlike when everyone wanted the bozohole to be amnestitized. Luckily, I think that Gasol will oblige us by opting out.

  • Green a good idea, except...,Dunleavy + McD same position opposite Butler. I like it, if Green would sign cheap. Nice dilemma and would sub a decent player when Jimmy comes out. More I think of it, the more I like it.

    Brooks, again, not very much.

  • Who would have expected Jimmy to have improved so much since he was drafted? And why can't Snell and McD have a break out season and Rose become an All Star next season? And how much motivation does Noah need to come back and play close to 2013? Sure we need another serviceable backup PG to ride out the regular season, and I think Brooks, Moore and Kirk can handle that, but when comes to playoff time, it's all about Rose and Butler playing most of the back court time. Brooks and Kirk will probably play 15 mins combined.

  • I'm a little surprised at how many people want to get rid of Gasol. I'll admit that I was wondering if he was the problem last year and was looking for trades, but with a new coach, I want to see this team play before I start shipping people out. I look at what happened with the Warriors when all they did was change coaches. Roles changed and line-ups changed and they became the best team in basketball when nobody thought they would. So I want to see what they do with Gasol and Noah, how they divide playing time with Taj and Nikko, and especially how much playing time goes to Hinrich. If this was still Thib's team, I would be hopping for a trade of Noah, Gasol, or Gibson, but it isn't. So I am willing to wait and see. Besides, I beleave that management, by not making big moves, trusts that they have a winning roster and that it was because of the coach that they lost last year. So I don't believe any big moves will be made untill they are proven wrong.

  • In reply to PaBullfan:

    I'm not so sure that many people want "to get rid of Gasol." I think most posters want Noah and Gasol to share minutes at the center position and try to get the best out of both of them.

    The person who is beating the drum to trade Gasol on this board is some guy who lives in a trailer who knows how to serve-up raccoon 47 different ways. He gets grumpy with me for pointing out his delusions. He usuually gets this way after his sister refuses to have sex with him.

  • Here is an interesting little tidbit that Thibs should have known prior to playing Hinrich major minutes against the Cavs in the playoffs.

    Last year Hinrich (you know, the guy who probably will have his jersey raised to the rafters at the UC next to Michael Jordan's) had the fourth lowest PER (6.8) in NBA HISTORY for a guard who played more than 1600 minutes in a season. Read that again. (source-BleacherReport)

    And Gar said that he was, quote, "excited" to have Hinrich back after he opted-in for this year.

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