Wow, does it feel good to simply participate in the crazy NBA transaction market.
And a lot of pieces outgoing too. The Bulls have balanced their roster after being very frontcourt-heavy heading into the offseason. But now after Daniel Theis and Thad Young moving on, and Lauri Markkanen remaining unsigned, AKME’s remaining moves are likely at the power forward and center spots.
Beyond Markkanen’s free agency, there is also some uncertainty in what the Bulls have left to spend. In terms of possible payroll, they’re still $19.5M below the tax, $26M below the hard cap (triggered when acquiring someone in a sign-and-trade). In terms of cap mechanisms to use: they have minimums, the Bi-Annual Exception, and possibly still the Mid-Level Exception depending on if Caruso is acquired in a sign-and-trade instead of using that.
And though the team has sent away so many assets, now without their 2023 and 2025 first round picks, they still have some remaining to use in a trade. This win-now mentality puts any young player on the block, from Markkanen in a sign&trade (his market looks pretty dried-up, unless the OKC Thunder decides to stop being a money-laundering joke) to possibly Troy Brown and Coby White and Patrick Williams.
If there’s a major trade in the works, well anything is possible. For example, Pascal Siakam would be pretty perfect.
For remaining free agents, it’s somewhat bare after 2 days, but backup bigs are generally on the fringe anyway.
I’ll copy Keith Smith’s list of remaining FAs (I also think the Bulls could use a veteran ‘true’ PG but DeRozan helps obviate that):