We’ve already steeled ourselves against the likelihood of the Bulls going after very good players due to cost and gegneral Bulls-ness. But an encouraging rumor has emerged that Chicago will try to actually play in the big leagues next week.
ESPN’s Brian Windhorst was on colleague Zach Lowe’s podcast Wednesday (h/t to Twitter follows @GreekBullsFan and @BarryTrilla) and they discussed Milwaukee Bucks restricted Free Agent guard Malcolm Brogdon.
Windhorst commented “I think the Bulls are lining up” an offer to Brogdon. He reiterated this as a possibility even considering the Bulls just drafted a point guard last week.
Windhorst and Lowe then went into more speculation over what the contract offer would be, and what is an offer high enough to where the Bucks wouldn’t match. The $20M starting figure on a 4-year deal was tossed around, and the Bulls have around $23M in total cap room and a max offer sheet would be a few million over that.
(side-note: correct shaming by Lowe on the Bucks if they let Brogdon walk due to tax concerns. I agree: this is when you pay the tax, don’t be small-market like the Chicago Bulls!)
He’s a good player and a seemingly great fit. 26 years old, can play both guard spots, a solid defender and very good shooter. Also by all accounts a ‘good guy’ veteran for the locker room. Jason went into this more on a recent post at Forbes:
Arguably the most impressive thing about Brogdon is his efficiency. He posted a 50/40/90 campaign in 2018-19 by shooting 50.5% overall, 42.6% on 3-pointers and 92.8% from the free-throw line, good for a true shooting percentage of 61.4%. He boasts a career true shooting percentage of 58.5%, which is comfortably above average.
Brogdon isn’t the most dynamic guard in terms of playmaking or off-the-dribble work, and the Bulls might be looking for somebody better in those areas. However, Brogdon is a smart player who makes good decisions and doesn’t turn the ball over much, and his prowess as a 3-and-D guard would be useful next to a player in Zach LaVine who likes to have the ball in his hands a lot anyway. The duo would essentially share point guard duties, with both players also capable of being dangerous off-ball threats
Jason pegged a reasonable offer at $15m, but while $20m is an overpay (and Lowe noted his scary foot-related injury history), that is what it would take to pry him from the Bucks. And even if they match, that means making things a bit less comfortable for a ‘rival’ (the Bulls are technically in the same conference)
So that’s exciting that the Bulls are considering a big swing like this. Here’s KC Johnson with some cold water earlier today though:
likely FA plan: Split $23M on 2 players and sign 3rd with room exception.