I've come to the conclusion that at the same price level, the Bulls like Kirk Hinrich more than Ben Gordon. Several peole discussing how improtant Kirk's leadership is for the team, and who believe the team would really struggle if he were to be traded.
This sentiment was strong last summer as well, so it's not hindsight on Gordon leaving. Everyone within the organization likes Kirk more. At the same price level, I like Ben Gordon more, but I'm not privy to the locker room mechanics, and I have to believe there might be something to it. As it's not one guy who's told me this, but virtually everyone around the team.
One source told me mid season that Gordon basically wanted nothing to do with Rose while Kirk was trying hard to help him improve even while out with injury. Gordon's a consumate professional when it comes to work ethic, but from what I gather, he never really went the extra mile for the team. That could easily be due to his contract dispute and hurt feelings. We'll never know.
So either the Bulls have no idea what they're doing, or they're full of shit and just want to smooth over the Gordon debacle with said gobs of shit.
I'm leaning towards the latter (and that's the preferred choice), because in the brief history of Bulls Confidential (remember Kirk being traded to make room for Gordon?), Doug as a reporter is...well, he's a very good blogger.