In a related story, I'm going away for a bit (but I'll get to that at the end).
I've been a bad blogger this week. There were some nice tidbits on a lot of players in the exit interview process, but there likely isn't going to be much new information until the draft and free agency.
What was gleaned was that Tyrus may be back on the block, Gordon wants to stay, Kirk wants to stay, Deng may not play for the UK after all, Rose is working hard, everyone thinks this is building towards something...what, I'm not sure.
But it's already started here as the Ben Gordon free agency approaches: that letting him go is somehow 'necessary'. I'm a mostly simple man when it comes to team building: Get good players. Keep good players. Trade for better players if you can. Letting Gordon go would go against that philosophy since he's one of the top players on the team.
This idea that the Bulls will take one step back by letting Gordon walk to make a step forward later is misguided. Their negotiation with Gordon has nothing to do with basketball. It's partially about staying under the tax, partially about satisfying a weird vendetta against him, and mostly about staying under the tax. And while Gordon's proved he's worth the $10m he was not offered last year, it's possible that he'll still twist in the wind with no team under the cap being willing to offer anybody such money, let alone him. And then the Bulls and him will find eachother necessary, the Bulls 'win' their negotiation, Gordon gets mega-rich but not super-mega-rich, and everyone's happy. Except those who think Hinrich is a better two-guard than Gordon, I guess.
And with lots of expiring deals (including one that's insured in Jerome James), 2 first round picks, and several damned productive players, Pax should agressively be trying to acquire a frontcourt star to pair with Rose. And that's all he should do. If it can't be done this summer, keep what you have and hope they play their way into being attractive enough, and try again at the deadline. Bosh, Amare, and the like could possibly be made available, as nearly the entire NBA goes into cost-cutting mode.
But this team isn't going to get better by getting worse. They can't (and won't) get bad enough to get back into the lottery or under the cap for free agency. If the Bulls do make a mega-deal they'll need some players to do so (and some players left over), and letting Gordon walk hurts that effort. And If they don't get a deal done and start the season with the same team minus Gordon, they won't be any better, and likely worse. And they weren't that good this year with him, so I have little interest in seeing what without him looks like.
But it's not in absolutes, it all has to do with what Gordon wants, what the Bulls offer (not just money but stability and playing time and showing they want to win...but mostly money), and what other teams are willing to offer. It's certainly possible that Gordon turned down his best offer last season, proved he was worth more, but will actually get less because of how teams are spending nowadays. And that would make me happy since they'd get Gordon at a relative discount. But all it takes is one 'stupid' team, and that's the risk they put on themselves by playing hardball last summer.
But there's many weeks before such things come to a head. And heck, even if the Bulls were proactive enough to think about making slight cost-saving moves to keep Gordon, it'd have to go through the decision tree process of Gar Paxdorf and the final sign-off wouldn't be completed for 7 weeks.
So knowing that information, I'm taking a break.
Kidding, it has nothing to do with that information. I'm going on vacation, far away, for a couple weeks. Wendy (wjb1492) is taking over during that time, she'll do fantastic, and you all better be nice.