- HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors - http://www.hoopsworld.com -
After Dunleavy, Bulls Need More Bargains
Posted By Joel Brigham On July 2, 2013 @ 5:00 am In Main Page,NBA | No Comments
For people that that don’t watch basketball closely, the news that Mike Dunleavy verbally agreed to a two-year, $6 million deal probably was met with a resounding, “Ho-hum.” However, if Dunleavy plays the way he did in Milwaukee last season, Chicago could have themselves a pretty nice bargain buy on the first official day of free agency.
Dunleavy, who shot a career-high 42.8 percent from three-point range last season, gives Chicago a veteran shooter who can also handle the ball, play respectable defense and pass the ball extremely well. Those abilities are what will likely make him a really good fit in Chicago. He’s exactly the kind of player these Bulls adore, and for the $3 million taxpayer’s mini mid-level exception, Dunleavy is just about as good as they were going to get.
One of Chicago’s largest needs this summer was a three-point shooter, and with Marco Belinelli likely priced out of the Bulls’ budget, they had to go in a different direction. Drafting Tony Snell and Erik Murphy was supposed to help in that area, too, but Tom Thibodeau tends to redshirt his rookies. Dunleavy gives them a vet who can help with outside shooting (and all those other things) immediately. Hopefully, he’s good enough to earn Thibodeau’s trust so that Luol Deng and Jimmy Butler don’t both average 46 minutes a game next season.
Up next for the Bulls is filling out the rest of their bench rotation. Once Dunleavy signs a contract after the league’s moratorium is lifted on July 10, and assuming Chicago cuts Richard Hamilton loose and keeps Erik Murphy, the Bulls will have eleven players under contract for next season. They’ll probably add a couple more, at least one of which will be a big man, and the team said on Monday that they’re confident they’ll be able to bring back 36-year-old Nazr Mohammed. Malcolm Thomas would be an inexpensive fifth big man, and he’ll have Summer League to prove he deserves an opportunity to return to the team full-time this season.
Since they’re headed for luxury tax territory again this season, they probably won’t roster more than thirteen players. Despite the fact that they have a $5 million traded player exception left over from the Kyle Korver trade last summer, they probably will only use it if they can acquire an expiring contract. If they follow the plan outlined above, those 13 players—Derrick Rose, Jimmy Butler, Luol Deng, Carlos Boozer, Joakim Noah, Kirk Hinrich, Marquis Teague, Mike Dunleavy, Taj Gibson, Nazr Mohammed, Tony Snell, Erik Murphy, and Malcolm Thomas—could very well be the roster we see on Media Day this fall.
It’s too early to say that the Bulls are “done,” but Dunleavy’s signing and the writing on the wall indicate that expecting any more splashy signings from this team would be short-sighted. Dunleavy was a great bargain, but expect the Bulls to take a step back and wait for teams with big cap space to spend it all up so that they can go bargain hunting again, this time for veteran’s minimum players, in a couple of weeks.
Article printed from HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors: http://www.hoopsworld.com
URL to article: http://www.hoopsworld.com/after-dunleavy-bulls-need-more-bargains
Copyright © 2013 HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors
Part of the USA TODAY Sports Media Group.