The Chicago Bulls are in obvious need of an upgrade on the offensive end if they truly want to become a contender.
The Bulls are expected to pursue New York Knicks’ forward Carmelo Anthony, who could wind up being the top player on the market. He would provide the Bulls with an elite scorer and if they can hang on to some of their role players, it could be the move that gets them back to the NBA Finals.
However, Anthony would have to take a pay cut to sign outright with the Bulls so the two teams may have to work out a sign-and-trade.
Nate Duncan of Basketball Insiders takes a look at the how the two sides could work out a sign-and-trade for Anthony.
Of the non-Love options, this is by far the best. They shed the salary of Carlos Boozer—included for salary matching purposes–while staying over the salary cap. This would enable them to keep and use their bi-annual exception (BAE) of up to a two-year contract starting at $2.1 million and the mid-level exception (MLE)* consisting of up to a four-year contract starting at $5.3 million. The latter could be used in whole or in part on Mirotic (he must sign a minimum three-year deal if he signs anything above a rookie contract) while the remainder could be used to fill in holes at backup point guard and big man. Staying over the cap would also facilitate using the non-guaranteed $4 million salaries of Amundson, James, and Brewer to trade for additional salary or promulgate another smaller sign-and-trade for a mid-level free agent. If the Bulls get under the cap, they would have to release these players and forfeit the option of using them in a trade to acquire more salary.
Anthony averaged 27.4 points, 8.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game last season.