Bulls Rumors: Timberwolves made a run to sign Alex Caruso

Alex Caruso, Bulls Rumors Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
Alex Caruso, Bulls Rumors Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports /

Among the early Bulls rumors that landed Chicago a big-time part of their current roster during the free agent window last offseason, signing the former Los Angeles Lakers point guard Alex Caruso was a very impactful move for this team. Last offseason, the Bulls signed Caruso to a four-year contract worth a total of around $37 million.

This was a signing that helped to elevate the two-way ability of the Bulls’ reserve backcourt unit. And Caruso is a piece of the backcourt unit that was even inserted into the starting five for the Bulls in the big road win over the Los Angeles Clippers on the night of Nov. 14 by a comfortable 10-point margin.

Executive vice president of basketball operations Arturas Karnisovas and general manager Marc Eversley definitely handed Caruso a bag to bring him to the Windy City. He looked to have an offer to re-join the Lakers, but it wasn’t for much more than $7 million in average annual value.

Yet, according to a report from The Athletic (paid content) on Nov. 15, the Minnesota Timberwolves were also a team that pursued Caruso in free agency during the summer. It also sounds like Caruso had at least a few other suitors during the offseason, but the Bulls ultimately won the sweepstakes to sign him.

Bulls rumors played out to get Alex Caruso to Chicago over the Lakers and Timberwolves

One of the reported motivating factors for the Bulls to be able to sign Caruso was the fact that this team was already building out a roster that appealed to him that could contend in the postseason in the Eastern Conference. A 2020 NBA Champion, Caruso wanted to join a team that could still make it to the postseason and was serious about doing so over the long haul.

The efforts of Karnisovas and Eversley in free agency last offseason clearly gave the indication that Chicago was looking to do just this. The Bulls also signed other big names in free agency last offseason including the former San Antonio Spurs star shooting guard/forward DeMar DeRozan and New Orleans Pelicans point guard Lonzo Ball.

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The addition of Caruso has helped the Bulls to get off to a 9-4 start through the first 13 games of the regular season following a win over the Clippers on Nov. 14. He’s taking this defense to a new level this season while also contributing some floor-spacing and secondary initiator/facilitator value on offense.