The drama surrounding Omer Asik and his $25 million offer sheet has ended before the Bulls have even received it. Earlier today the Bulls began to near a deal with guard Marco Belinelli and now ex-Thunder center Nazr Mohammed has agreed to sign with the Chicago.
The signing of Belinelli to the bi-annual exception would have meant that the Bulls were out of the Asik race but that deal has yet to be made official and although there is no official number on Mohammed yet, he has agreed to choose signing with the Bulls over signing with the Brooklyn Nets, Chicago’s only competition in the sweepstakes.
After laying dormant for most of free agency mulling their options with Asik, the Bulls have apparently decided to fill out the roster with the money they would have given Asik rather than spend it all in one place.
I did learn during function that Nazr Mohammed agreed to sign w Bulls (vs. Nets) meaning they won’t match Houston offer match sheet to Asik
— Peter Vecsey (@PeterVecsey1) July 22, 2012
Mohammed is a 14 year veteran and is returning home by signing with the Bulls. Mohammed was born in Chicago and spent his college days at Kentucky before being a first round draft pick in 1998.
At 6’10”, Mohammed will be another new piece on the bench mob and will effectively take Asik’s place behind Joakim Noah. With Noah still nursing his ankle, Mohammed may see heavy minutes when the season begins and then settle into a Bench Mob role as the season continues.
Chicago has needed to replace basically all the members of the Bench Mob as C.J. Watson, Kyle Korver and Ronnie Brewer are all gone. Brewer still may return if the New York Knicks lose interest in him but with Korver and Watson under contract elsewhere, it was clear new members were needed.
Mohammed will join Vladimir Radmanovic and most likely Marco Belinelli as new comers to a Mob that sees only Taj Gibson and Jimmy Butler returning.
Gibson is the only member of the Mob that has been on roster for the past two seasons. Butler is entering his second season as an NBA player.
Mohammed will be signed to the veteran’s minimum which for him will be $1.3 million.