The Chicago Bulls are obviously very high on power forward Taj Gibson and after they dump Carlos Boozer, either trading him or waiving him via the amnesty clause, Gibson will likely become their starting power forward.
However, if the Bulls do plan on adding New York Knicks’ forward Carmelo Anthony, they may have to dump Gibson, according to Ken Berger of CBS Sports.
Chicago is open to moving one of its first-round picks, and a league source confirmed the club has had conversations with Orlando about a trade for Arron Afflalo. It would take a major shakeup — amnestying or trading Carlos Boozer and trading Taj Gibson — but the Bulls are well-positioned to make room for a much bigger catch: Knicks free agent Carmelo Anthony. With the Rockets needing to dump Omer Asik and Jeremy Lin to make room for Anthony, the Bulls could have the inside track if the Knicks’ superstar decides he wants to move on. If the Bulls feel good about their chances of landing Anthony, they could move both of their picks to create room — or dangle one in sign-and-trade talks with New York, which badly needs future assets. In addition to the 16th and 19th pick in this draft, the Bulls have Sacramento’s 1-10 protected pick next year and the right to swap with Cleveland. If the Bulls use their pick at 16, they have long favored four-year college players; Shabazz Napier fits that bill, and also would fill a need with D.J. Augustin hitting the free-agent market.
If the Bulls do want Afflalo, but can’t afford to take on his salary, they may be able to swing a deal to send Gibson to the Magic, who would be a great fit next to center Nikola Vucevic. Of course, that may not be enough for the Bulls and the more likely scenario is the Magic get one of the Bulls’ first round picks and maybe a young player like swingman Tony Snell.
Gibson averaged 13.0 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.4 blocks and 1.1 assists per game last year while shooting 47.9% from the floor and 75.1% from the free throw line.