Two separate rumors popped up today involving the Bulls’ Luol Deng for a high lottery pick. The first from Rick Bucher noting that the Cavs were perhaps interested in Deng for the #1 overall pick in the draft [with the Bulls sending something else as well], and the second was with the Bulls approaching the Wizards for the #3 pick which would likely also return Emeka Okafor in the deal to Chicago.
While even Bucher seemed skeptical that a deal would go through with the Cavs, his skepticism seemed more wrapped around the idea that the Cavs wanted too much for the pick (or at least that’s how I read it.
Mark Stein reported the trade with Washington and noted that the Bulls floated the potential deal to the Wizards rather than vice versa.
If Chicago were to trade Luol Deng to get higher into the draft then Ben McLemore, Otto Porter, or Victor Oladipo would seem to be the most obvious targets. The Bulls may decide that it’s better to part ways with Luol Deng now rather than try to extend him in another season when he’ll likely ask for more money than they want to pay and risk losing him for nothing.
If they could get a high lottery pick this year then it’s a pretty sweet deal for them if there’s someone they like. On the same note, a rebuilding team that wants a veteran presence would surely benefit from Luol Deng, but I don’t see all that much incentive unless that team simply feels it has enough youth already. However, with Deng a free agent at the end of the season it feels like a lot to give up on a guy who might bolt anyway.
I’d bet against any deal getting done.