Vuc is too good to be a role player, but not good enough to be in any "core"
"Gottlieb pegs an average annual value of $18.2M and three years as “satisfactory” for the Bulls"
Goddamn. If they are actually dumb enough to consider offering this kind of a deal, I don't even know what to say. That's just really bleak. Makes me not want to read this blog!
What Will said ("he holds the most offensive responsibility of anyone on the list") is true but is also part of the problem with this team. The offensive makeup and profile of the team needs to change. Giving that large of an offensive load to someone who doesn't effect winning the way he should is a huge negative. I can argue they can replicate Vuc's output by committee and just by changing the makeup of the team. I could also argue that his large offensive responsibility has gotten the Bulls absolutely nowhere. Why pay (overpay) for something where the value is questionable at best?
This is a good summation of the Vuc situation. They will almost certainly overpay to keep him, but the only right move is to try like hell to turn over the roster. All of DeMar, Zach, Vuc should be available, but particularly DeMar and Vuc because of their age.
They paid too much to acquire Vuc, but that is long over and most people were on board with it at the time. It is not a reason not to just let him go if it comes to that.
Love the phrase "Terminal case of Kobe Brain." Prayers up for Lavine.
I've been more AK-positive than most, but how he deals with getting rid of and replacing Vuce is the true litmus test. I know you mock this viewpoint regularly, but my optimistic hope is his post-season presser declaring desire to bring back Vuce is (thinly veiled) leverage in a sign and trade for a cheap replacement level center.
Of course, it's the Bulls. So I'm sure we'll bring back Vuce just so Stacey can scream himself hoarse for more post touches.
The groupthink blindly trudging into a Vuc extension for "reasons" that aren't backed up by anything more than wishful thinking is the worst part of this offseason.
I'll add another bit. I've been working on defensive metrics that takes into account the DFG stats now available from the league. I'm still playing around with it, but the thumbnail sketch is that Vuc is unmistakably one of the worst defensive players at the position that most requires defense.
This is not a remotely difficult decision. Vuc is a change of pace role player. He's not a star, and he's only situationally even a starter. Do not pay this guy much more than the MLE under any circumstances. Better to let him leave for nothing and replace him.
I mean I don't even hate Vuc as much as many do but the suggestion that the bulls should offer him $18 mil is outrageous. Yikes.
For reference, here are the free agent centers (clipped from HoopsRumors.com)
I took out some of the truly-old and ones who will be too expensive/unlikely (Brook Lopez, Jakob Poeltl)
Udoka Azubuike (24)
Bismack Biyombo (31)
Thomas Bryant (26)
Drew Eubanks (26)
Alex Len (30)
Robin Lopez (35)
Chimezie Metu (26)
Mason Plumlee (33)
Dwight Powell (32)
Naz Reid (24)
Moritz Wagner (26)
Cody Zeller (31)
Jaxson Hayes (23) - restricted
Jock Landale (28) - restricted
Trade targets that won't cost much outside of money
Clint Capela (30)
Jusuf Nurkic (30)
Richaun Holmes (31)
Daniel Theis (32)
JaVale McGee (37)
trade targets who would cost assets but would be way better than Vuc (brought these up in the playoffs post)
Bulls are going to wait out Ball's issues, because doing anything else while there is hope is really bad for business. Given that, and given that letting Vuc go would free up offensive opportunities across the team, I don't see that replacing him even comes into it. Get a warm body and let the rest of the team fill the offensive vacuum.
Chicago could trade Vuc to Orlando for Carter Jr. Chicago would need to throw in at least 2 first rounders for Orlando to even consider it though.
How about Luka Garza? Vuc2.0.
Realistically, if Drummond picks up his option, then sign Dedman and Leonard to minimums and go 3-headed monster.
Gottlieb is on the wacky zany fun show CHGO where they all unapologetically cheerlead for basically every Bulls player, so the culture he's in prevents him from not ultimately defaulting to "X Bulls player is great, A- for the 2023 season, sign him at near league high for his position because that's just what the market is **shrugs**". If Gottlieb was on a different media platform he'd likely not come to this cognitive dissonance conclusions. Him and that guy who got fired from NBC Sports would be a great Bulls analytics podcast if it ever were possible.
Those Steven Adams and Brook Lopez salaries look appropriate for Vuc, wherever he lands. Probably a $13M a year, 4th or 5th best player. But as much as I'm probably a slightly bigger Vuc fan than most here, I'd prefer to see him walk, because this roster needs a firm kick in the arse.
The new owner of the Suns is on Bill Simmons's podcast this week. A stark contrast from what we hear from Bulls' ownership and management. Juxtapose this interview with Jerry Reinsdorf's recent comments and your head will explode.
breaking rumor/news, Darnell says AK just got a secret contract extension https://substack.com/profile/3012-your-friendly-bullsblogger/note/c-15593082