clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Bulls waiting for the Magic, on a wing and a player

No official movement yet from the Bulls in this, the week the Magic hold the Bulls cap hostage. The Magic made a move themselves on Monday in signing Quentin Richardson, who as a shooter playing on the wing could be interpreted as a potential sign they're ready to let Redick walk. However, Orlando Pinstriped Post disagrees, figuring that while this may be the end for Matt Barnes in Orlando, Q and Redick play different positions.

I'm inclined to agree that the Magic will eventually match. Despite whatever the Bulls did to front-load the contract and the tax problems it'll cause Orlando, the Magic are trying to win the NBA title next season, and now's not the time to get tax-skittish, especially for a player that seemingly everyone over there can't stop saying needs to stay.

The question is what can the Bulls do now, regardless of the uncertainty with Redick's offer sheet? Maybe nothing, as going from $7m to $14m in cap room is quite the different scenario. Though whether Redick is here or not, the Bulls should be looking towards athletic defenders at the 2/3 spot. While the Bulls have an obvious need for shooting, they put a lot of resources (and placing some of those resources in limbo) to do so, and and as a result, the 2/3/4 positions of Redick, Deng, Korver, Boozer, and Taj may be one of the least athletic in the league. I thought Thibodeau (led by Rose and Noah) wanted to defend, rebound, and run

Hopefully a guy is out there who can be signed relatively cheaply, and therefore can be done irrespective of the Redick decision. Barnes himself would be out there, though he's pretty exclusively a SF. Ronnie Brewer and Josh Howard have been have been linked to the Bulls this week, but I'd imagine the Bulls couldn't get a commitment from them without knowing where they stand with Redick. It may cost them either or both, with many teams having the MLE at their disposal still (plus the Clippers with cap space and no established SF whatsoever).

And as it's my goal to continually harp on the joys of using the cap space in trades, here's an example that came up this afternoon: Marc Stein has been reporting the Mavs interest in Al Jefferson (the Jazz have since been deemed frontrunners in that pursuit), with a hangup on their desire to foist some contracts on the Timberwolves along with the non-guaranteed Dampier deal, namely that of Matt Carroll (3yr, $11.7m) and DeShawn Stevenson (expiring, $4.15m). Both potentially useful (and at the right positions) cap-friendly players (alright, not sure it's even value to have Carroll for $8m less over 3yrs than Redick if he simply can't play anymore, but he once could), and the Bulls would get paid in picks, cash, or other assets to take them.

That's the joy of cap flexibility, and I still say the Bulls were a bit too hasty to give up some of that flexibility to sign Korver and Redick right on the outset of free agency. Clearly some permutations of that Mavs example* isn't a definitively better result, but it didn't seem like the Bulls even considered such options before letting the Magic rule half of our cap space for a week.

*I know people are starved for a bunch of great hypothetical examples, but before I actually get around to doing that (there have been plenty of names thrown out there for days, just nothing fully fleshed out), here's my preference of what type of player I'd be looking to acquire using the (hypothetical) big chunk of cap space. 1) Pseudo-star SG that a team may be willing trade without the Bulls giving up a core piece. 2) Larger single 1-year contract for a competent-if-overpaid player , to hopefully use at the coming trade deadline 3) Mid-level guys on short deals, preferably getting some perks for doing so.