The Chicago Bulls are interested in trading for Kevin Love, Marc Stein and Brian Windhorst of ESPN report.
Details are sparse, the Bulls would likely need to send at least Taj Gibson and Jimmy Butler to Minnesota, according to Stein and Windhorst.
The Bulls made a hard push for Carmelo Anthony at the beginning of the free agency period. When he rejected their offer and stayed in New York, Chicago went to a respectable Plan B. They signed Pau Gasol, Nikola Mirotic, and Mike Dunleavy, and used the amnesty provision to get Carlos Boozer off their salary cap.
Despite having only $US2 million in cap room at the moment, the Bulls still have enough financial wiggle room to trade for Love.
Love is owed $US15.7 million in 2014-15. To acquire him in a trade, the Bulls would have to send ~$13.7 million back to Minnesota. Here are the potential chips they could use:
- Taj Gibson ($8 million)
- Nikola Mirotic ($5.3 million), can’t be traded for 30 days
- Jimmy Butler ($2 million)
- Doug McDermott ($1.9 million) can’t be traded for 30 days
- Tony Snell ($1.4 million)
- 2015 1st-round pick
- Sacramento’s 2015 1st-round pick (top-10 protected)
Any combination of players that frees up $US13.7 million in salary would work under NBA rules.
Even if we assume the Bulls are going all-in and are willing to part with Gibson and Butler (or the highly-touted Euroleague star Mirotic before he has even played a minute in the NBA), Cleveland still might be able to make Minnesota a better offer.
The Cavs can offer them the last two No. 1 picks — Anthony Bennett and Andrew Wiggins — as well as bunch of future 1st-round picks (their own 2015 pick, Miami’s 2015 pick, and a future Memphis pick).
If Cleveland opts to keep Wiggins and Minnesota has to look elsewhere for a trade partner, the trio of Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, and Kevin Love would be a joy to watch.
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