Proposed Sign-&-Trade Lands Target Bulls ‘Would Covet’, More for DeMar DeRozan

DeMar DeRozan, Chicago Bulls

Getty DeMar DeRozan #11 of the Chicago Bulls.

The Chicago Bulls and DeMar DeRozan want to continue their relationship. However, DeRozan turned down a multi-year contract offer from the Bulls that was potentially worth as much as $40 million, though, per NBC Sports Chicago’s K.C. Johnson in April.

That could pave the way for the Bulls to pivot this offseason.

“Chicago has to choose a direction and should be interested in helping DeRozan find a new home via a sign-and-trade,” Bleacher Report’s Greg Swartz wrote on June 9.

“DeRozan could field offers from contenders with cap space like the Philadelphia 76ers and Orlando Magic, but would need to be patient and accept the fact that he won’t be Plan A or B for either. Going home to Los Angeles in a sign-and-trade with the Lakers could work if D’Angelo Russell turns down his $18.7 million player option (to get L.A. below the first apron).”

Swartz suggests LA could send “some combination” of Austin Reaves, Gabe Vincent, Jarred Vanderbilt, and Rui Hachimura. Based on the Bulls’ roster construction, a package featuring Hachimura, Reaves, and Vanderbilt would make the most sense.

Bulls get:

– Austin Reaves
– Jarred Vanderbilt
– Rui Hachimura

Lakers get:

– DeMar DeRozan

DeRozan is coming off a three-year, $81.9 million contract.

There is some speculation from Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus that Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf would be against making a trade that would help LeBron James for fear he would surpass Michael Jordan.

Bulls Get Lakers Trio in Proposed Trade

Reaves entered the season amid plenty of optimism following the four-year, $53.8 million contract he signed in restricted free agency last summer.

He averaged 15.9 points, 5.5 assists, and 4.3 rebounds this past season.

The Lakers have resisted trading Reaves and are expected to take a similar stance this coming offseason, per The Athletic’s Shams Charania during an appearance on the “Buha’s Block” podcast in May.

Charania speculated that the Bulls “would covet” Reaves in potential trade scenarios on “Run It Back” in November, though that was for a potential Zach LaVine trade.

Vanderbilt dealt with a knee injury for much of the season.

He made 29 appearances during the regular season, averaging 5.2 points, 4.8 rebounds, 1.2 assists, and 1.2 steals in the first year of a four-year, $48 million contract. He is a non-shooter – 29.6% on 0.9 3PA last season – but provides tremendous defensive versatility.

Hachimura inked a three-year, $51 million contract last offseason. He also grew close with James in that time.

He averaged 13.6 points, 4.3 rebounds, and 1.2 assists, shooting 42.2% from deep in 2023-24.

DeMar DeRozan Urged to Bolt Bulls, Seek ‘Real Chance’ at Championship Run

The Bulls would gain little financial flexibility with this deal built around a projected $40 million annual salary. The incoming trio will count $39.7 million against the cap next season. But it could help the Bulls avoid losing the three-time All-NBA pick for nothing this offseason.

The Athletic’s Darnell Mayberry wrote on June 4 that the Bulls could approach DeRozan’s camp with a similar offer this summer on June 4, possibly with the added incentive of a player option.

Mayberry expects the next contract offer to come in around $40 million annually too. Swartz argues against the six-time All-Star accepting that offer while considering him one of the offseason’s “biggest flight risks.”

“Running it back with the Bulls shouldn’t be an option for DeRozan, who deserves to play for a team with a real chance at winning a championship next season.” Swartz wrote.

This plays into DeRozan’s comments in the immediate aftermath of the Bulls’ loss to the Miami Heat in the second round of the Play-In Tournament. It was the second straight year the Bulls’ season ended in that fashion.

“Hate missed opportunities,” DeRozan told reporters on April 19. “I just want to have that opportunity to give everything great in you. Opportunity. Like I said, my mind, my stance on wanting to be here is still the same. But I just want to win more and more than anything, just have the opportunity to win.

“I gotta go home and see the first round of the playoffs, second round of the playoffs. It’s frustrating.”

DeRozan said he wanted to stay in Chicago, but added that he wanted to “win more.”