Free Agent Big Man Wants to ‘Be a Bull by Tonight’: Report

Getty Mo Bamba

According to Chicago Sun-Times beat writer Joe Cowley, free-agent big man and former Nikola Vucevic teammate with the Orlando Magic, Mo Bamba badly wants to sign with the Chicago Bulls.

Cowley tweeted on Thursday, June 30, just hours before free agency begins, Bamba “would be a Bull by tonight,” if it were up to him.

As Cowley mentions in his tweet, there are other potential stumbling blocks to this union.

According to multiple reports, Bamba may want between $13-$15 million per year, or at least, the full mid-level exception. The Bulls may be against using the MLE because it would send them into the luxury tax. Whether the organization wants to avoid the tax completely, or it doesn’t view Bamba as the right player to make such an investment in is unclear.

However, if every angle of this report is to true, it seems a Bamba signing is unlikely unless he decides to take less to play in Chicago and to be reunited with Vucevic.

Andre Drummond’s Name is Being Mentioned in Conjunction With the Bulls

Former four-time NBA rebounding champion, two-time All-Star and All-NBA selection Andre Drummond is said to be on the Bulls’ radar.  NBC Sports’ K.C. Johnson wrote:

“The Bulls are one of many teams who are expected to join the market for veteran center Andre Drummond. If that marriage were to happen, expect a veteran’s minimum salary.”

Drummond is still just 28 and he’s a proven rebounder and interior presence on both ends of the floor. He may not be a player a winning team can depend on to start, but he would give Chicago a solid backup presence behind Nikola Vucevic, who seems destined to stay with the Bulls this season.

During the 2021-22 season, in 73 games split between the Philadelphia 76ers and Brooklyn Nets, Drummond averaged 7.9 points, 9.3 rebounds and 0.9 blocked shots per game while shooting 57% from the field and 52% from the free-throw line.

However, in 24 games with the Nets–all starts–Drummond scored 11.8 points, grabbed 10.3 rebounds, swatted 1 shot, converted 61% of his shots from the field and just under 54% of his free throws.

He played 22.3 minutes per game with the Nets. If he did sign with the Bulls, he’d likely see those minutes decreased a bit. However, the Bulls are said to be interested in a rim protector at center, someone whose skill set is a little different than Vucevic.

Drummond is probably a bit more mobile when it comes to switches than Vucevic, but he’s also not an elite shot blocker. Bamba is probably a better fit, but there is no doubt, Drummond would come cheaper and he’s more experienced. Those two factors could prove to make a Drummond signing more likely for Chicago.

Bulls Reportedly Still Shopping Coby White

According to Johnson, the Bulls are said to still be exploring a trade that would ship Coby White out of the Windy City. Chicago is seemingly ready to give those backup minutes to second-year player Ayo Dosunmu.

After Dosunmu’s promising rookie season and White’s struggles to find consistency, it seems clear which player the Bulls value the most.

Unfortunately, according to Johnson, the Bulls aren’t getting as much interest in White as they may have hoped. If something doesn’t materialize, there is a chance the Bulls hold onto White in hopes of establishing a market for him during the 2022-23 season or after.



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