The Bulls have gotten plenty of advice since Joakim Noah dislocated his shoulder over the weekend. The injury will sideline the popular veteran for four to six months and may signal the end of his career in Chicago.
Noah was headed for free agency this summer anyway, and nearing age 31, he has seen his role on the team diminish. The ninth-year center out of Florida started just two games this year and is averaging 21.9 minutes of playing time, the lowest since his rookie season. As a result, his numbers across the board — 4.3 points, 8.8 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game — are down dramatically from his best years.
As soon as the news broke about Noah’s condition, columnists started submitting their prescriptions to fix the Bulls. Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com advocated a full-scale roster shakeup that included moving Pau Gasol — who can opt out of his contract in July — before next month’s trade deadline. Steve Rosenbloom of The Chicago Tribune agrees, saying the team should also deal away Derrick Rose if possible. Bradford Doolittle of ESPN.com (Insider only) advocated keeping Gasol to give Chicago a shot in this year’s playoffs and predicted more playing time for 6’11” rookie Bobby Portis. Sam Smith of Bulls.com saw the incident as an opportunity for the Bulls to negotiate a short-term deal with Noah while other suitors might be scared away by the injury.
This leads me to today’s question: What would you do if you were running the Bulls instead of Gar Forman and John Paxson?
Would you try to unload as many veterans as possible and rebuild around Jimmy Butler and the younger players? Or would you keep the veteran core in place and make a move to attempt to win this season? And how hard would you try to re-sign Noah when he enters free agency?
Take to the comments section below to share your thoughts and opinions on the topic. We look forward to what you have to say.