Bulls Acquire Lonzo Ball Via Sign-And-Trade

AUGUST 8: The Bulls have officially acquired Ball, the team announced late on Sunday night in a press release. As expected, the Pelicans acquired Satoransky, Temple, and a future second-round pick in the deal. The future second-rounder is Chicago’s 2024 selection, and New Orleans also received cash considerations.

This transaction continues to be investigated by the NBA due to possible “gun-jumping,” since it’s a complicated sign-and-trade deal that was reported as being done the minute that free agency opened on Monday.

The Pelicans and especially the Bulls may face discipline from the league based on that investigation’s findings. However, the fact that the trade was processed while the probe is ongoing is another sign the NBA isn’t going to disallow it.

Due to base year compensation rules affecting Ball’s new contract, neither the Bulls nor the Pelicans will  create a trade exception in the deal.

AUGUST 2: The Bulls and point guard Lonzo Ball have agreed to a four-year, $85MM deal, Klutch Sports CEO Rich Paul tells Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). The contract will include a fourth-year player option, according to Michael Scotto of HoopsHype (Twitter link).

Ball is a restricted free agent, but the Bulls and Pelicans will work out a sign-and-trade to get him to Chicago, Paul tells ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link).

The Pelicans will receive Tomas Satoransky, Garrett Temple, and a second-round pick from the Bulls in the sign-and-trade agreement, according to Charania (Twitter link).

Temple is a free agent, so he’ll be signed-and-traded as well. He’s getting a three-year contract with the first two years guaranteed, according to David Aldridge of The Athletic, who adds that the deal is expected to be worth about $5MM per year (Twitter links).

It’s a major coup for the Bulls, who have been linked to Ball for the last several months. The team reportedly discussed a trade with the Pelicans at the deadline, but couldn’t reach a deal to land Ball at the time. Now, Chicago is in position to add the former No. 2 overall pick to a starting lineup led by Zach LaVine and Nikola Vucevic.

Ball, 23, had arguably the best season of his career in 2020/21, averaging 14.6 PPG, 5.7 APG, and 4.8 RPG in 55 games (31.8 MPG) and improving his shooting numbers to .414/.378/.781.

His deal is right in line with the four-year deals signed by fellow point guards Fred VanVleet and Malcolm Brogdon in recent free agencies.

While Pelicans stars Zion Williamson and Brandon Ingram expressed a desire to continue playing with Ball, the team’s front office never seemed sold on the idea of making him a long-term cornerstone. Adding Satoransky will give New Orleans some depth at the point, though the team will likely remain in the hunt for another point guard in free agency.

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