Chicago Bulls: Nikola Mirotic reportedly offered $45 million post-Portis trade

(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images) /

The Chicago Bulls reportedly offered former forward Nikola Mirotic in free agency after Bobby Portis was dealt to the Wizards.

After trading forward Bobby Portis to the Washington Wizards ahead of the 2019 NBA trade deadline, the Chicago Bulls allegedly offered former Bull Nikola Mirotic $45 million in free agency to entice him return to the team, according to media reports. Here’s a look at what this shocking development, if it’s true, means.

While forward Nikola Mirotic has agreed to a deal enabling him to play for Barcelona, his head coach appears to have revealed that the veteran received two NBA offers, one of which came from the Chicago Bulls.

Mirotic spent three full seasons playing for the Bulls when things got ugly during preseason prior to the 2017-2018 campaign.

As it’s been widely reported, former Bull Bobby Portis was involved in an altercation with Mirotic at practice that resulted in both missing some game-time action.

Many believe Mirotic was never able to get over the fight that occurred between he and Portis. Mirotic reportedly suffered several broken bones in his face.

Some have said Portis was viewed more highly of by the Bulls organization, which may have contributed to the rift between he and Mirotic.

As the 2017-2018 season showed, Mirotic and Portis often found themselves at odds battling for the same minutes in the Bulls’ rotation. The competition between the two helped to fuel a string of victories during December 2017. Some dubbed the Bulls one of the hottest teams in the league during that stretch of time.

Portis tried to extend an apology to Mirotic in the weeks following the altercation, but it seems it wasn’t enough. Much of the interactions shared between the two teammates often appeared contrived on Mirotic’s end.

Ultimately, the saga between the two carried on until Mirotic’s trade demand was fulfilled, sending the veteran to the New Orleans Pelicans in February 2018.

Portis’ time in Chicago ended abruptly last season when the Bulls sent him packing in a trade to the Wizards. The move sent shockwaves to the hearts of many Bulls fans everywhere. So much for thinking the Bulls favored Portis over Mirotic.

Mirotic ended his 2018-2019 campaign as a member of the Milwaukee Bucks, trying to capture the Eastern Conference title only to fall short to the Toronto Raptors.

Since then, Mirotic and Portis have both entered this summer looking to shop the market for new offers.

Portis is utimately looking to cash in on the deal of his desire after signing with the New York Knicks.

Per Mozzart Sport, Barcelona head coach Svetislav Pesic revealed to the TV show “In the Hoop” the circumstances surrounding Mirotic’s decision to play for Barcelona rather than stay in the NBA.

Pesic seemingly wanted to set the record straight for anyone questioning why Mirotic would leave.

"He stated, “Normally, when a player of this caliber returns to Europe despite this offer, everyone wonders if he’s coming back just for the money. He has a contract fitting for his quality but those figures that are reported are speculation, not to say lies. The guy is European-oriented, he and his family bought a house in Barcelona.”"

Hearing the Bulls were rumored to have offered $45 million to Mirotic should send shivers down the spines of many fans, regardless if they are #TeamNikolaMirotic or #TeamBobbyPortis.

If the Bulls were allegedly willing to trade Mirotic only to have interest in bringing him back after sending Portis packing, what exactly does that say about the organization and its interest in building a strong team culture?

The optics surrounding the Bulls franchise have significantly improved since Portis was traded. It became clear that the organization didn’t want to keep Portis or Mirotic around, if the cost was too high.

dark. Next. Vegas is seriously undervaluing the Bulls

Let it be clear, the Bulls have way too much to lose, if they were allegedly trying to lure Mirotic back to town.