For much of the offseason and into training camp, rumblings around the Bulls on the trade-rumor front have been mostly focused on guard Zach LaVine, and with good reason. LaVine is in the second season of a five-year, $215 million deal, and as happens so often in the NBA, there is remorse on all sides about the deal.
But trading LaVine is a massive undertaking, one that is unlikely to happen until the trade deadline rolls around—if it all this season—and one that will likely require multiple teams and draft picks. A simpler trade option is well within reach if the Bulls decide to pull the plug on the roster as it is presently constructed: veteran guard Alex Caruso.
The asking price is likely to be a first-round pick and a player of some ability—down from last year, when the Bulls rumors and reports suggested the team would not engage in Alex Caruso trade talks unless there were two first-rounders on the table. One Eastern Conference executive likened Caruso to Josh Hart, who was traded from Portland to New York for a first-rounder, plus Cam Reddish, Ryan Arcidiacono and Svi Mykhailiuk.
“Coveted is a good word for him. If you want to make a trade tomorrow they could trade Alex Caruso,” the executive told Heavy Sports. “Half the teams in the league would be there with an offer. There’s a lot of teams monitoring that situation and they’re looking at Caruso more than anyone on that roster. Just a matter of when the Bulls are ready to make changes and ready to let him go.”
Slow Going on Bulls Rumor Mill Lately
There has not been much to the Bulls trade rumor mill lately, though. Team president Arturas Karnisovas put together the roster with a series of moves two years ago that added Nikola Vucevic at center and DeMar DeRozan at forward, bringing in Alex Caruso. The team also added point guard Lonzo Ball in 2022.
But after that flurry of moves, Karnisovas has been determined to see how far this roster can go as constructed. Given the team’s 3-5 start, he might at least be on the way to getting the answer. And that could poke the Alex Caruso Bulls trade rumors back into gear.
“They got a lot of calls on him last year at the deadline and in the summer,” the executive said. “And it’s always been a, ‘No, thanks,’ for them, or they ask too much to where they’re not serious. But that is probably going to change. They have young guys who need to get on the floor more. If things don’t change in terms of the record, and they can get a first-rounder for him, they’d have to.”
Lakers, Heat, Kings Tabbed Among Possible Suitors
As far as rumors on what teams might be interested in the Bulls’ Alex Caruso, the exec pointed out that most any contender could use him. He cited the Lakers as a specific example, which makes sense—Caruso signed a four-year, $37 million contract with the Bulls to leave L.A. in 2021, though Caruso made clear he wanted to stay with the Lakers if they’d match the deal. They didn’t, Caruso left, and the Lakers regretted it immediately.
The Heat and Kings are other possibilities, mentioned, though working out a deal could be difficult. And if the
Caruso, known for his tough defense, averages 6.4 points, 2.5 assists and 3.9 rebounds this year in 22.6 minutes. He is shooting 54.3% from the field and 35.0% from the 3-point line.