Johnson On Bulls Backcourt Options

December 18 2012 at 10:45pm CST By Alex Lee

According to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune, the Bulls are at the very least considering cutting Nate Robinson prior to his contract becoming fully guaranteed on January 10.  Johnson says that the Bulls can waive Robinson prior to that date with no penalty, an option that "always has been under consideration internally" and is growing more likely as rookie Marquis Teague continues to develop.

The Bulls backcourt has been in flux since they lost Richard Hamilton to a foot injury.  That uncertainty would seem to make parting ways with Robinson risky, but Johnson says that Teague and the inevitable return of Derrick Rose will make him expendable.  Since Hamilton was sidelined in early December, Teague has seen his minutes double with mixed results.

Citing league sources, Johnson adds that Hamilton, who was the subject of trade rumors this summer, is again being offered in certain scenarios.  There is a $1MM buyout for Hamilton's deal next year, making him attractive as an expiring contract as well as a veteran scoring addition for a contender.  Johnson says the Bulls will need to rid their payroll of just over $3MM to avoid the luxury tax, which they have never paid.

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