Chicago Bulls: 3 possible James Harden trades with the Rockets

James Harden, Chicago Bulls Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports
James Harden, Chicago Bulls Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports /
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Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls
Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls Mandatory Credit: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports /

1) Chicago Bulls trades to get James Harden

If the Bulls do want to keep any key pieces of their young core out of discussions from the previous trade deal, then it is going to cost them in terms of draft picks. This last possible trade package for the Bulls to get Harden from the Rockets is somewhat of a mix of the last two swaps. The Bulls do have to toss in a few future first round draft picks, but they also get to keep WCJ in the mix.

What the Bulls send in total here to the Rockets is LaVine, Markkanen, combo guard Tomas Satoransky, third-year small forward Chandler Hutchison, and those aforementioned two future first round draft picks. One of those draft picks will be lottery protected in 2022, to give the Bulls a chance if this Harden trade doesn’t work out for them. The other one is a future unprotected first.

At least in this situation the Bulls not only get to keep WCJ, but they get to hang onto their fourth overall pick in the first round of the 2020 draft. That could help them build around the likes of Harden, point guard Coby White, and WCJ. It is still a solid mix of talent between what would be left of the young core, who they picked in the first round of the 2020 draft, and Harden.

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The Rockets do add one player to make sure the rosters even out. They send veteran small forward DeMarre Carroll to the Bulls, who should be able to be signed for a veteran’s minimum in this scenario. The Bulls would at least be able to add some wing depth back after parting ways with LaVine and Hutch.