Fallout, Leftover Details From Deng/Bynum Trade

January 7 at 8:15am CDT By Luke Adams

Late last night, the Cavaliers and Bulls struck 2014′s first deal, and arguably the most interesting swap of the ’13/14 season so far, with Chicago sending Luol Deng to Cleveland in exchange for Andrew Bynum‘s contract and several draft picks. In our story on the trade last night, we made note of a few potential ramifications of the deal, including the possibility of the Cavs re-signing Deng in July, and the effect that losing the All-Star forward will have on the Bulls’ chances of a high lottery pick. There are many other leftover details related to the trade to round up though, so let’s dive right in and tackle a few of them….

  • Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports reported last night that Deng turned down a three-year, $30MM extension offer from the Bulls before the team decided to trade him. In his full piece on that news, Woj notes that Chicago was unwilling to go as high as $12-13MM over four or five seasons for the 28-year-old.
  • Following up with more details on those extension talks, K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune (Twitter link) hears there’s a chance the two sides also discussed a four-year, $40MM contract, while Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today tweets that Deng’s reps may have been looking for a deal in the $15-16MM per year range.
  • Although the Bulls will sneak below the tax threshold when they waive Bynum, that move will leave them with 12 players, one short of the league minimum. ESPN.com’s Brian Windhorst points out (via Twitter) that adding a player today for the prorated veteran’s minimum would still keep the Bulls below the tax, albeit not by much. Chicago also doesn’t have to add a 13th player immediately, since teams can drop to 12 for up to two weeks at a time, so the club could retain a little flexibility by waiting, then signing players to 10-day contracts.
  • More financial details from Windhorst (Twitter link): Chicago’s total payroll and tax savings add up to more than $20MM+, and the Bulls will also receive another $2-3MM when this year’s tax money is dispersed, assuming team payroll remains below the $71.748MM threshold.
  • A source tells Sam Amico of FOX Sports Ohio that this likely won’t be the last trade of the season for either the Bulls or the Cavs (Twitter link).
  • The Cavs had been trying for “quite some time” to move the Kings‘ first-round pick, tweets Jason Lloyd of the Akron Beacon Journal. The pick isn’t quite as valuable as Cleveland’s other first-rounders, since its protection, combined with the Kings’ recent futility, could result in it eventually becoming a second-round pick. The first-rounder is top-12 protected this year, then top-10 protected from 2015 to 2017. Lloyd adds that the Cavs tried to give the pick back to Sacramento or loosen the protection in various deals before sending it to Chicago.
  • Pau Gasol and the Lakers were connected to the Cavs frequently over the last week, but L.A. remained adamant about receiving a young player or premium pick from Cleveland, which wasn’t going to happen, tweets Amico. ESPN.com’s Marc Stein adds (via Twitter) that acquiring Deng was always the Cavs’ dream scenario, which is why the team was willing to send picks to the Bulls, but not the Lakers.
  • According to Ramona Shelburne of ESPNLosAngeles.com (Twitter link), the Lakers still believe they have other ways to get under the luxury tax after not landing Bynum. In my opinion, that’ll be pretty difficult.
  • In his trade story at ESPN.com, Windhorst adds the Knicks to the list of teams expected to have interest in Bynum once he clears waivers.
  • The Bulls created a modest trade exception in the deal, worth the difference in Deng’s ($14,275,000) and Bynum’s ($12,250,000) salaries: $2,025,000.
  • Sean Deveney of the Sporting News writes that the Cavs completed this trade with Kyrie Irving‘s long-term future in mind, while ESPN Chicago’s Nick Friedell says that the divorce of Deng and Tom Thibodeau may lead to an adjustment period for both guys over the next few weeks.
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