The most common Chicago Bulls mentioned when it comes to trade rumors have been Lauri Markkanen, Thaddeus Young and Tomas Satoransky. There have even been a few wild trade concepts suggesting Chicago part ways with Zach LaVine. While it is possible any of those players could be dealt, the player Chicago is most likely to ship elsewhere, at least according to Grant Hughes of Bleacher Report, is Al-Farouq Aminu.
It might not be the sexiest name to throw around this season, but there are multiple reasons Aminu and his contract will be valuable for the Bulls.
Aminu is the Bulls’ Player Most Likely to Be Traded in the Offseason: Report
Here is a piece of what Hughes mentioned as he called Aminu the most-likely Bulls player to be traded this offseason.
On a $10.2 million expiring salary, he makes more sense as a trade chip than an on-court contributor in Chicago. Though the Bulls don’t have a first-rounder available to trade until 2026, they could toss in a second-rounder to sweeten the pot if Aminu isn’t viewed as a positive asset at his current pay rate. Then again, perhaps there’s a contender out there that believes the veteran wing can move past the knee injuries he’s faced over the last couple of years and return to the valuable three-and-D form he showed during his best seasons with the Portland Trail Blazers. That expiring deal also limits the downside risk to any team acquiring the 30-year-old.
Hughes thinks it is more likely the Bulls simply allow Markkanen (who is a restricted free agent) to walk away without getting any compensation. I’m not so sure about that, but he is on the money with most of his takes on Aminu.
Losing Aminu won’t hurt the Bulls depth at all. The veteran barely played last season, and he doesn’t figure to be a big part of Chicago’s plans moving forward. Aminu’s expiring deal is very attractive, and it might also be an asset for a team willing to stretch Aminu, which would relieve more weight from his contract in 2021-22, while adding a portion of what’s still owed to the veteran over the next three years.
Teams like flexibility and limited liability. Aminu’s contract represents a bit of both, and it could help the Bulls acquire a younger and more usable veteran in a trade.
There Are Other Options With Aminu Besides a Trade
The Bulls will probably try to find a trade partner who is willing to take Aminu. However, if they are unsuccessful, the odds of Aminu still being a part of the roster next season seem slim.
The Bulls may elect to stretch Aminu themselves. Doing this could clear up enough cap space this year to allow Chicago to sign one of the more high-priced free agents. With prime targets like Kyle Lowry and Lonzo Ball figuring to carry a $20 million-per-year price tag on their next contracts, the Bulls may need the money that would come from stretching Aminu to add their franchise point guard.
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