Since it's apparent the Bulls don't want to pay the luxury tax, I've got a very simple set of advice for them. The best they can do is to:
1. Dole out your money to high minute players, not low minute players.
2. Build an age cohesive team. Winning on a budget requires hitting on draft picks and getting lucky and that takes time to develop. Hence, you absolutely cannot afford to have key members of your team being over the hill and declining because they're 5-10 years older than your really, really good core players.
Enforce these rules strictly, don't get emotional.
1. Don't match the offer sheet on Asik. Pursue a sign and trade if possible, but right now that's not financially feasible.
2. Make it financially feasible by getting as out from under your Boozer and Hamilton deals as best you can.
Rip Hamilton for Daequan Cook. This results in a savings of $650k.
If you really insist on matching on Asik now, you can do it without hitting the LT (at least until you have to pay him $14M in 2014-2015). I'm against that, but at least if you think he can play alongside Noah you can try it out.
You can also probably re-sign Taj and still afford to offer the MLE to Lee. You've got $2M left by my calculation to sign a PG before you hit the LT.
1- (Rose), $2M vet, Teague
2- Lee, Cook
3- Deng, Childress, Butler
4- Taj, (fill in with Deng and Noah)
5- Noah, Asik
That comes to $70.01M based on what I think the salaries are.