(CBS) There’s no shortage of speculation surrounding the Bulls as the Feb. 20 trade deadline approaches and what they may do to better position themselves for this summer, when Knicks star Carmelo Anthony could be on the open market.
Will Chicago use the amnesty provision on Carlos Boozer? Is Kirk Hinrich on his way out? Who could be interested in Mike Dunleavy?
Even the idea of dealing Taj Gibson, a favorite of coach Tom Thibodeau, has been broached.
On Wednesday, Bulls beat writer K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune joined the Mully and Hanley Show to discuss the options for Chicago. And you might be surprised what he had to say.
Johnson believes the Bulls are more likely to sit pat than anything else.
“I’m in the minority here,” Johnson said. “I’d be surprised if they made any move. Taj, there’s no chance they’re going to trade him because if they use the amnesty provision on Carlos, you have no starting power forward next year. There’s this theory if you trade Taj and get cap space, you can go after Carmelo. I just don’t see this organization doing something like that. They did that in 2010 with Kirk Hinrich — going after LeBron (James) and Dwyane Wade didn’t work out. In this case, you’d have to amnesty Carlos, trade Taj and get nothing in return. And if you didn’t get Carmelo, you wouldn’t have a power forward on your roster. I don’t see that happening.”
“I’m also in the minority: I don’t see them moving Mike Dunleavy,” added Johnson. “You need low-salaried rotation players on your roster next season. Mike (signed through 2014-15) makes only a little over $3 million, he’s obviously a rotation player. Obviously if a young talent got offered for Mike Dunleavy, they’d do it. But I don’t see that happening.
“Kirk is a small possibility, but the Bulls are now dealing from a position of strength because they’ve gotten under that luxury tax line with that Deng trade. So now they can say, ‘If you want Kirk, well, give us a high first-round pick.’ Again, I don’t see that playing out.”
“I think this is pretty much going to be the team you see them finish the season with.”