Saturday, July 6, 2024

Bulls Reportedly Found 3rd Team To Facilitate DeMar DeRozan Trade

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DeMar DeRozan is the big domino everybody is waiting to drop. The Chicago Bulls have allowed the six-time All-Star to explore his options over the past week. Multiple teams have looked into him. The Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers, and Miami Heat were big names mentioned earlier. However, the frontrunner has emerged. Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Sacramento Kings are making a determined push to acquire the 34-year-old. The problem is the contract situation makes it difficult. That is why a third team might be needed to help the sign-and-trade go through.

Chicago doesn’t want to sign any big contracts, further indicating its desire to start fresh. Thankfully, it appears things are falling into place. According to NBA insider Marc Stein, the San Antonio Spurs have emerged as the third team necessary to help push a deal forward. Exact details of how the agreements could unfold aren’t available yet, but it sounds like the three principal teams are in place. The final challenge is figuring out who gets what. Will the Bulls want draft capital or will they settle for a young player with upside?

DeMar DeRozan sign-and-trade comes down to money.

He is trying to avoid a mid-level exception contract, which is why teams like the Lakers and Heat are unlikely to get involved. Neither have the cap space to make it happen. Sacramento needs to do some juggling but has enough flexibility to work around the issue. Since San Antonio seems to have their young core of players in place, they might be inclined to give up some draft capital in the deal while taking on a bigger contract. Arturas Karnisovas no doubt has an idea of what he’s looking for. Rumors have persisted he is trying to find more 2025 draft capital.

Once DeMar DeRozan is out the door, all eyes will shift to Nikola Vucevic and Zach Lavine. The All-Star center is the easier of the two to move, but finding an interested team might be difficult. Lavine is by far the hardest to move because of his contract and his recovery from an injury. It doesn’t help that he’s reportedly been at odds with the Bulls for months over perceived bad-faith communication. Whatever the case, Bulls fans should have a better idea of the team’s direction within the next week at most.

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