Please note that this is not in any way an exciting idea. It's just a point of discussion and an expansion of a previous FanPost with the rumor that Chicago might consider trading Deng or Noah. Is it possible that the Bulls decide to fully dump this season (trading Deng AND amnestying Boozer) knowing that Rose will miss most of it? Follow me after the jump to discuss further.
Here's what we know:
1. Rose is out until January/February at the earliest. And rushing him back likely puts him at risk for re-injury.
2. Reinsdorf is decidedly not a fan of paying the luxury tax, especially not for a team that may struggle to make the playoffs.
3. The Bulls, even without Watson, Asik, Korver, and Brewer, will be within $2 million of the luxury tax this coming season. That means no meaningful free agents can sign with the Bulls unless the team is willing to go into the tax (and even then the options are limited). And without Watson, we likely have a minimum-salary starting PG until Rose returns.
4. The Bulls don't have a great draft position, so it's unlikely that they'll have more than a reserve caliber player coming in from the draft.
5. None of the remaining Bulls under contract are capable of creating offense off the dribble, and only one (Boozer) remotely resembles a go-to scorer. The rest rely entirely on their teammates to create shots for them or second chance points.
Given these facts, it's going to be tough sledding just to make the playoffs next year. So my question is this: is it possible that the Bulls amnesty Boozer AND trade Deng with the plan of missing the playoffs this coming season? That approach would give us a lottery pick this year, a lottery pick next year, and plenty of cap space after next season to acquire a free agent in the 2013 offseason. And maybe even Mirotic joins the team as well.
So the 2013-2014 season would have a healthy Rose, SG and SF from two lottery picks and/or a big-time free agent in the 2013 offseason, Gibson/Mirotic, Noah, Mirotic/Gibson, Butler, a mid-level exception at backup PG or SG/SF, and some veteran's minimum salary guys to fill out the rest of the bench roles. That's a potentially terrific starting 5 with a solid young backup PF, a decent defender at backup SG/SF, another quality veteran or two (perhaps another SG/SF with some offense?). And that team isn't threatening the luxury tax for a few more years. Add in the Charlotte pick at some point (likely after the 2013-2014 season) and it's a continual reload for a decent run of 3-4 years.
Do you think the front office would actually go that route? Would you be willing to suffer through an awful season next year to see such a plan come to fruition?