There are still many holes to be filled in the Bulls lineup but with money being an issue, it’s going to be hard to get through this offseason without doing a few things someone doesn’t want to do.
That someone is Jerry Reinsdorf and that something is going into the luxury tax threshold.
But the Bulls are surely going to go there anyways, despite the fact that the front office is doing everything they can to try and avoid that. It’s like that guy from Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. At the end Indy is getting the crap beat out of him by the burly guy who bullwhips the slave children. But the guy gets caught in the conveyor belt attached to a giant roller and no matter how much he screams and claws, dude’s going to get pin rolled.
Substitute that guy with Jerry Reinsdorf and you have an accurate picture of what the Bulls are doing right now.
So the news that O.J. Mayo is on the Bulls radar needs to be taken with a grain of salt the size of the boulders the aforementioned roller on the conveyor belt was used for (okay, I’m done with Indy references. Just be happy I don’t bust them out every time the Bulls play Indiana).
All of the Bulls offseason moves revolve around one move — the re-signing of Omer Asik. Houston has yet to deliver the Jeremy Lin offer sheet to the Knicks so the clock on Asik hasn’t started yet. But the most tragic thing in all of this is if the Bulls don’t match Asik, but wait too long and lose out on other free agents.
Right now O.J. Mayo is the best available free agent so he most likely won’t come cheap. But the teams drawing interest in him may have to pass for similar reasons to that of the Bulls.
The Lakers are one of the reasons the new luxury tax was created and they’re still dealing deep within the old format. The Suns just went on a spending spree getting guys like Goran Dragic and Michael Beasley but because Eric Gordon’s offer sheet was matched by the Hornets, they could be in the market.
Dallas is another option and we all know how much Mark Cuban isn’t afraid to spend money. And then there’s the Bulls.
Phoenix and Dallas are expected to bid high on Mayo and it won’t take a very high one to scare the Bulls out of the race. But if for some reason Chicago either isn’t faced with deep pocketed opposition or they go hard after Mayo, they may be better off next season then they are right now.
That’s an understatement. Adding on of the better shooting guards in the league making your team better is amateur hour, come on. But really breakdown all that Mayo could do.
The Bulls still don’t have a legit point guard option. Kirk Hinrich will come in but he’s also going to be backing up Rip Hamilton who wasn’t healthy for a majority of last season and is a guy the Bulls have shopped around to get off the hook for the $5 million they owe him.
Signing Mayo means that Kirk can play point guard and only point guard. Chicago also won’t have to fret about what happens if Hamilton goes down and stays down like he did last year. In fact, Hamilton would be coming off the bench of Mayo came to Chicago.
And then there’s the long term effect. Mayo was a guy back at the 2011 trade deadline that the Bulls were rumored to be after to fix their lack of a two guard presence. Well guess what, there is still a lack of a real two guard in Chicago and the same two guys are being kicked around as solutions (the other being Courtney Lee, formally of Houston).
Should the Bulls sign Mayo they’d also have two of the top three draft picks from the 2008 NBA Draft– so there’s that too. But in all seriousness, adding Mayo is a no brainer and it doesn’t just fix a temporary need; it’s a long term sewing of a wound.
Jerry Reinsdorf wants to win but he doesn’t want to spend money. The NBA is run by a financial man-child in David Stern so running your team the way Reinsdorf does isn’t going to work. You can teach algebra to kindergartners and you can’t be fiscally responsible in the NBA.
Of course all of this will most likely be rendered meaningless as the Bulls are sitting on their hands until the Omer Asik situation gets sorted out. And judging by the way the Knicks are avoiding the FedEx man and that Jeremy Lin offer sheet like a suspect on Law and Order: SVU, it could be a while.