NBA: Chicago Bulls Not Shopping Deng a Good Idea?

Luol Deng: to Shop, or Not to Shop?

6/30/12 in NBA   |   Presslp   |   9 respect

April 19, 2012; Miami, FL, USA; Chicago Bulls small forward Luol Deng (9) during the second half against the Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE
This isn’t to say they should definitely trade him, but because of his All-Star play last season Deng’s trade value is still high (though his inability to carry the Bulls past the Philadelphia 76ers in the playoffs works against him). Any detrimental effects the injury had on his game was relatively unnoticeable outside of the games he missed, which means teams may still be interested even with his torn ligament.
 
To make matters even more attractive, Deng’s hefty contract only has two seasons left, making it a low-risk deal for anyone with cap concerns (and I’m sure we’ll all be revisiting this topic after next season once his contract starts expiring).
 
If the Bulls were to trade Deng, they’d obviously need to find another small forward, something they could have addressed in the draft but elected not to. They could also use him to land a productive shooting guard, something they’ve been unable to do for the last two years.
 
But the Bulls seem intent on sticking with Deng, and with their apparent interest in retired shooting guard Brandon Roy, they may find themselves mired in more injuries next season. Rose will still be nursing his ACL, Richard Hamilton proved this season he’s made of glass, and Carlos Boozer’s health is always worrisome. (And the Bulls are lucky Joakim Noah didn’t break his ankle in that Philly series).
 
The Bulls front office tends to pride itself on thinking ahead (they have the Bobcats’ pick and European top prospect Nikola Mirotic coming in 2016). If this is really the case, then they should coerce Deng into having his surgery after the Olympics in order to preserve his health for the long term. Otherwise, they should think even further ahead and consider trading him while he’s still valuable in order to avoid potential ongoing issues with Deng’s wrist.
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