Winners and losers from NBA free agency: Bulls continue to confound

Chicago Bulls v Indiana Pacers
Chicago Bulls v Indiana Pacers / Justin Casterline/GettyImages
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Some big names have changed teams in the first rush of NBA free agency, including two Chicago Bulls. 

After trading Alex Caruso in a questionable deal, the Bulls lost Andre Drummond for nothing and did a three-team sign-and-trade of DeMar DeRozan in which they got the worst return in the deal. 

They are finally taking on a rebuild behind Coby White, Josh Giddey, Matas Buzelis, Patrick Williams and Ayo Dosunmu, so fans should expect a step back in the standings, especially if the Bulls trade Zach LaVine before the season for pennies on the dollar. 

Grade the trade: Bulls continue to botch everything with DeRozan deal. Grade the trade: Bulls continue to botch everything with DeRozan deal. dark. Related Story

But were the Bulls one of the big losers of free agency? And who were the winners? It’s not over yet, but here’s what it looks like so far. 

Winner: Oklahoma City Thunder 


The Thunder were already very good and were able to trade for Caruso while giving up their biggest roster weakness in Giddey. They added Isaiah Hartenstein in free agency to a defense that was already good. They re-signed two quality role players in Aaron Wiggins and Isaiah Joe to team-friendly free-agent deals.

They have Nikola Topic in the pipeline along with a ton of draft picks including five next season. The Thunder plugged holes with quality role players, added more young talent and all they gave up was a guy they didn’t want anyway. 

Right now, the Thunder look like the best team in a stacked Western Conference and should be contending for titles for the foreseeable future. 

Loser: LA Clippers 

The Clippers lost Paul George, Daniel Thies and Mason Plumlee in free agency. George is obviously the biggest loss and the Clippers did little to replace him. 

They did sign Mo Bamba, Nic Batum, Derrick Jones Jr and Kevin Porter (puke), so who knows, maybe they will find chemistry, stay healthy and end up giving the Clippers a better overall team, but it doesn’t look like it on paper. 

Then they signed James Harden to a two-year/$70 million deal, which looks like an overpay. Who else was going to give Harden that much? The teams that had cap space wouldn’t have wanted him and there really wasn’t a contender where he was a fit. 

It’s hard to see how the Clippers are better without further moves.