Tuesday, January 7, 2014
1/07/2014 10:16:00 AM | Posted by Matt Davis | Edit Post
Late last night while the majority of the nation was enjoying an incredible BCS Championship game between FSU and Auburn, the Cleveland Cavaliers and Chicago Bulls were deep in negotiations over Andrew Bynum and Luol Deng.
Brian Windhorst reported that the Cavs had indeed traded Andrew Bynum and three draft picks to the Chicago Bulls in exchange for All-star forward Luol Deng.
The real motive for the Bulls to get rid of Deng was to start a semi-rebuild by acquiring draft picks, get below the tax, and assure future cap flexibility. By moving Deng and getting under the tax the Bulls save $20.6 million this season, and avoid any long term commitment.
It is important to note that Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the Deng had denied a three-year, $30 million extension, which prompted the Bulls to make this move.
In return, Winhorst reported that the Bulls will get:
"Bulls did well with picks, will get a 1st rounder the Cavs own from Sacramento, limited 1st swap rights from Cavs in 2015, and 2 2nd round picks."
The Bulls also receive Andrew Bynum obviously, but apparently they have no desire to retain him, and he will be waived. What a fall from grace it's been for Andrew Bynum.
That's really a nice haul for Chicago. With Derrick Rose out another season the Bulls weren't going to make any noise this year - even when D-Rose was healthy early on the Bulls did not look like anything special. They can still remain hopeful that Rose can come back healthy and resemble the MVP he was two years ago, and now they have draft picks to bring in young talent, along with cap flexibility to add another star with D-Rose. There is also speculation that the Bulls might amnesty Carlos Boozer this off season, which would give them even more cap room to acquire a star. A core of Rose, Butler, Noah, Gibson, Mirotic, paired with cap room and draft picks have put the Bulls in a very good position for the future. Not to mention avoiding the luxury tax. Well done by the Bulls.
For the Cleveland Cavaliers, they get one of the best forwards in the NBA. He is still only 28 years old and he is having a nice season, averaging 19 ppg, 6.9 rbg, and 3.7 apg. He's also one of the elite wing defenders in the NBA. The Cavs have been a complete disappointment thus far this season at 11-23, but maybe this trade can change their fortune. It's been noted that they've been looking for an upgrade at SF, and Deng is one of the best in the business. They'll have to give Deng a new contract that will tie up their future cap space, but as of now, on paper, the Cavs have assembled a roster that is immediately better and should make a run to the playoffs this year. The only worry about Deng is his recent injury history from the heavy minutes Coach Tom Thibodeau requires from his players and Deng's ability to not sign with them as a free agent.
Apart from the Cavs and Bulls, the other story in this situation to watch is that of Andrew Bynum - who has been linked to signing with either the Miami Heat or Los Angels Clippers.