Welcome to ESPNChicago.com! On Thursday, Nick Friedell stops by to chat about the NBA season as well as the Chicago Bulls.
Friedell covers the Chicago Bulls for both ESPN Radio 1000 and ESPNChicago.com.
Send your questions now and join the chat Thursday at 2:30 CT/3:30 p.m. ET!
Nick Friedell (3:30 PM)
What's going on everybody? Hope the summer is going well. Let's get this chat rolling ...
Ryan (New Lenox)
When do the Bulls expect Nikola Mirotic to come over from Spain, and does having his rights affect their plans for this offseason in any major ways I.E. Boozer's value, the draft, FA
Nick Friedell (3:33 PM)
The Bulls are hopeful that Mirotic will come over next summer but even they aren't sure. As far as this summer goes, having him in the fold doesn't really change things for the Bulls. Next summer is when they will have more open cap space, assuming they amnesty Boozer, to go after other free agents.
Anthony [via mobile]
Any chance there actually gona trade deng this year.. As much as I love deng I'm really sick of the bulls overvaluing their own talent and passing up and true all stars !!
Nick Friedell (3:35 PM)
There's a chance -- but I don't think there is going to be much of a market for Deng. Plus, the Bulls would only move him for younger, cheaper pieces and or draft picks. Why would a team invest in a player who could leave at the end of the year when his contract ends? The Bulls will keep looking around but the odds are higher that Deng returns next year.
Ralph, Westmont [via mobile]
Assuming Nate Robinson departs during free agency, who is a point guard the Bulls will potentially go after to bolster the bench with Hinrich and Teague?
Nick Friedell (3:36 PM)
The Bulls feel pretty solid about having Hinrich and Teague behind Rose. They'll see who falls in the free agent market, but I don't think point guard is an area of concern for them.
Hrithik (Glendale Heights)
Do you think the Bulls will keep Boozer if he plays consistently next year?
Nick Friedell (3:38 PM)
No, I think this will be his last season with the Bulls. If the Bulls didn't amnesty Boozer's deal, they wouldn't have much available cap space at all to sign other players next summer.
Demetrius Chicago [via mobile]
Who do you think the bulls will pick with the 20th pick?
Nick Friedell (3:41 PM)
I think the Bulls will go for a big man in the draft -- depending on which players are available when they select. When you go up and down their roster, it's about the only true area of weakness right now. Guards: Rose, Hinrich, TeagueForwards: Deng, Butler (who may start the year as the two guard), Boozer GibsonCenters: Noah and ...If the Bulls can get a big man they like in the draft, I think it makes the most sense.
Do you think signing Nate is a priority for the Bulls seeing how Rose and Hinrich have been hurt a lot in the past couple of seasons?
Nick Friedell (3:44 PM)
No, I don't. I think the Bulls know that Nate is gone this summer because some team will offer him a lot more money than they will.
Phil S (Northbrook)
Who do you see the Bulls bringing in after next year when they have room? (Everyone has always talked about K.Love being good buds with Derrick) What are the chances this happens....
Nick Friedell (3:45 PM)
The Bulls would love to do a deal for Love, I just don't think the Timberwolves want to move him right now.
What about the shooting guard position heading into this year? They need a scorer.
Nick Friedell (3:47 PM)
Thibs sure made it sound like Jimmy Butler will be the guy heading into next year. He is still developing as a scorer, and it will be interesting to see how his game changes with Rose on the floor, but the Bulls definitely have confidence in him.
Say that the Wolves want to market Love, could you throw some numbers at me that would ballpark what the Bulls would be paying for him?
Nick Friedell (3:50 PM)
I've said all along, if the T'Wolves wanted to move Love they would likely ask for Butler, Mirotic and the Charlotte pick at least. Plus Deng or Boozer to make the numbers work. Obviously, the Bulls wouldn't want to give up every asset they have -- but if they want another star next to Rose they would be the going rate.
Anyone going to pay Bynum? Or do the Bulls have a shot for 1 year deal with him?
Nick Friedell (3:51 PM)
If I were the Bulls, I wouldn't go near Bynum. Let another team take a risk on those knees.
Phil S (Northbrook)
Where do you see Taj's game going after a slow start in 2012. Do you think he will pay dividends on his extension?
Nick Friedell (3:52 PM)
Taj has got to be able to consistently knock down a 12-14 foot jumper to take the next step. His defense is amongst the best in the league -- if he can hit that shot consistently the Bulls will be in very good shape.
Do you think the Bulls try to sign another shooter this offseason? Any chance for another Kyle Korver signing?
Nick Friedell (3:53 PM)
They'd love to sign Korver -- but he's probably going to get a bigger deal than the Bulls would be able to offer. If he'll take a pay cut it would be a great fit for Thibs and Co.
Do you see Drose leaving Chicago if the Bulls can not bring on another super star soon?
Nick Friedell (3:57 PM)
Derrick has always said he would never leave Chicago and I believe him. It will be an interesting storyline to follow the next couple of years though. If the Bulls can't find another star and they can't win a title with this group, maybe Derrick will think about going somewhere else. That's why the pressure is on Gar Forman and John Paxson to find a way to get another star into the fold. The Bulls are a very good team, and Thibs is one of the best coaches in the league, I just think they'll always be a piece away over the next couple years against LeBron until they get another scorer to pair with Derrick.
Do you really think K.Love is the answer? I'm not sold on him taking the Bulls to the next level.
Nick Friedell (4:01 PM)
I don't know if he is the answer but I do think he is the best of a lot of weaker options. LeBron is the guy everyone will be focused on next summer but if he didn't come to Chicago during the summer of 2010 why would he suddenly play for the Bulls now? Wade is on the downside of his career, Bosh looks lost at times, Anthony would be a nice fit but he would have to take a pay cut to sign with the Bulls which I don't think is happening. Danny Granger could fit but he just missed an entire year because of knee problems of his own. The Bulls are in a bind -- and I think if they can find a way to get Love, even with his injury concerns, they should do it.
Why would Melo need a pay cut if we don't re-sign Deng(since Melo is a SF anyway) and amnesty Boozer?
Nick Friedell (4:06 PM)
The Bulls are going to have roughly $20 million in cap space assuming Boozer is amnestied and Deng comes off the books next summer. Melo is making more than that already right now -- so if he opts out of the deal he's in by next summer, you'd figure he'd want a deal similar, if not larger.
Nick do you think the Bulls need a back to the basket post up player instead of someone of Love? I don't know how much he would add to this team
Nick Friedell (4:11 PM)
The Bulls need another scorer. Obviously, Love has a different type of offensive game and wouldn't be the natural fit next to Rose since he can't create his own shot -- but he is a 20/10 machine and would dominate the boards alongside Noah.
If Mirotic is as advertised, wouldn't he bring the same skill set as K. Love?
Nick Friedell (4:16 PM)
No. Love is a beast on the boards -- Mirotic is a stretch four but I haven't heard anyone say he is that kind of rebounder. Plus, Love is a proven commodity. Mirotic has had a couple nice seasons in Europe but nobody really know how his game will translate in the NBA.
Nick Friedell (4:17 PM)
I'm out of here everybody. I'll talk to you guys before the draft. Thanks for the questions. Talk to you soon.