Bulls Telling Teams Thaddeus Young Not Available

Bulls executive vice president of basketball operations Arturas Karnisovas has been telling teams that veteran forward Thaddeus Young isn’t available via trade, reports Kevin O’Connor of The Ringer.

Young is a highly coveted trade target for contending teams, O’Connor notes. His contract is relatively team-friendly ($13.55MM in 2020/21, with a partial guarantee on his $14.19MM salary for ’21/22); he’s a veteran leader with plenty of playoff experience; and he’s having a nice year on the court, recording 12.1 PPG, 5.9 RPG, and 4.4 APG on 60.9% shooting to go along with strong, versatile defense.

The Bulls have just a 16-18 record and could get a nice return for Young if they’re willing to sell, so rival teams are wondering if Karnisovas is trying to increase his leverage by saying the 32-year-old is off the table, per O’Connor.

Still, Chicago is tied for ninth in the East, putting the team right in the thick of the playoff race — Young has been a key part of the Bulls’ success, and the club would like to see its young players (especially Zach LaVine) get some postseason experience. As such, it’s no surprise that Karnisovas would be opposed to selling off Young for draft assets or other pieces that wouldn’t help Chicago in the short term.

The Bulls will have a challenging stretch of games to begin the second half, including contests this week against Philadelphia (Thursday), Miami (Friday), and Toronto (Sunday). If they start slipping down the Eastern Conference standings, they could become more inclined to be sellers at the March 25 trade deadline, but if they’re still in the hunt in a couple weeks, it will be difficult for suitors to pry Young away.

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12 thoughts on “Bulls Telling Teams Thaddeus Young Not Available

  1. formerlyz

    Well, their bench of Satoransky, Thad Young, and Denzel Valentine has been very effective for them, and has helped them be in the position they’re in, so if they intend on pushing for a spot, they cant move him. In that scenario, they should probably consider someone that can guard guards, and/or another wing shooter/defender

    • Ironmonger835

      Why? They’re not rebuilding. They’re trying to make the playoffs.

      • JBHoops

        This is wrong. They are absolutely still rebuilding. Just because you *might* squeak out a playoff spot doesn’t mean you aren’t rebuilding if the pieces you have on the roster aren’t good enough to be main pieces on a championship contender. Half this roster isn’t even under contract next year. Almost the entire bench, Temple (who is starting rn), and Markkanen are gone next year. They need to get another high draft pick and accumulate assets, not invest in pieces not here next year or in 33 year old players.

        • Ironmonger835

          Markkanen is restricted and he will be re-signed. Everyone who’s contract is up is basically useless like Felicio, and Porter. Why trade Young for a Late first round pick? Everyone always thinks late first round picks are so awesome until you end up with another Chandler Hutchison. It’s usually only worth it if you’re definitely out of the playoffs.

          • Josh5890

            This is a good way to look at it. If Thaddeus could land you a lottery pick that is one thing, but for a mid to late 20’s pick I’ll pass.

            Besides it is important for this team to get to the playoffs and get some experience in that atmosphere.

  2. Of course. How could the FO trade him now, and have any creditability with the team as to the goal of making the playoffs. They are right there, and he’s a critical piece right now. If and when they’re out of the playoff picture (prior to the TD), then it would make sense to trade critical pieces.

    Knicks are in a similar position. I don’t expect any rotation players to be traded unless it’s an upgrade; not a trade for future assets.

  3. stevep-4

    Thad is at peak value, but a great mentor. He has a lot to do with Lavine’s breakout this year. However, if a good pg can be had, or a pick that will get one, they should cash him in, Temple too. They also should dump Markannen, he doesn’t fit, get a bruising big for him.

      • stevep-4

        Your alternative? Current team is not going to compete at a next tier level.

      • Agree with you. Would be terrible for moral to trade Young for a late 1st round pick. I understand the logic that just squeaking into the playoffs with the last spot playoff spot and then just getting beat in the first round is not a good place for a team to be. None the less, it would be terrible to make LaVine play with a bunch of stumble bums in meaningless games. So hang onto Young for now. The Bulls can always trade Young in the off season or before next season’s trade deadline. Plus give the Bulls fans something be excited about. It has been years since the Bulls have be any good at all.

      • The Bulls can be patient with the Markkanen situation. The Bulls can take the same approach as the team did with LaVine three years ago. Wait and see what offers Markkanen receives from other teams. The Bulls have the right to match the offer. The Bulls can let the market set the price for Markkanen. Markkanen is still young and has unique talent. Just use Markkanen the right way and have the right expectations. Don’t expect Markkanen to guard Embiid.

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