Bulls Sign Marco Belinelli

July 24 2012 at 3:03pm CST By Luke Adams

TUESDAY, 3:03pm: The Bulls have officially signed Belinelli, the team announced today in a press release.

MONDAY, 5:16pm: Belinelli's deal has been agreed to and is for one year at the bi-annual exception of $1.96MM, sources told Ken Berger of CBSSports.com (via Twitter).

2:02pm: The Bulls and Belinelli are finalizing details on a one-year deal that would pay Belinelli a little under $2MM (Chicago's bi-annual exception), according to Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com. An international report suggested the contract would be for two years, so we'll have to wait to see what the two sides work out.

FRIDAY, 3:16pm: Marco Belinelli and the Bulls appear to be in "advanced talks," according to Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld (via Twitter). Kennedy cautions that nothing is imminent yet, but the Bulls figure to be seeking a two guard to replace the departed Ronnie Brewer.

According to Kennedy, Belinelli and the Bulls may be talking about a deal involving the bi-annual exception, though using the BAE would create a hard cap for the Bulls this season. The club is already well over the cap, and when it reached an agreement with Kirk Hinrich, it was for the $3.09MM taxpayer mid-level exception rather than the full $5MM mid-level exception.

That's not to say that the Bulls couldn't still access the full MLE and the BAE — the team hasn't passed the tax apron yet, so those exceptions are still available. But using them would mean the team would be forced to keep its payroll below the apron (about $74MM) for the rest of the season, and it would almost certainly mean letting Omer Asik walk. If the Bulls hoped to land Belinelli without introducing that hard cap, they would have to work out a sign-and-trade or get 26-year-old to accept a minimum-salary deal.

Earlier this week, Eric Pincus of HoopsWorld named the Bulls, Magic, Warriors, and Knicks as potential suitors for Belinelli, while Aggrey Sam of CSNChicago.com reiterated Chicago's interest in the former Hornet yesterday.

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