Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Why Aren't The Bulls In The Hunt For Melo?

All this speculation about a Tayshaun-and-Billups for Melo deal got me thinking: If Denver's actually serious about dealing him, shouldn't the Bulls try to get involved and see if they could swing a Hinrich-and-Deng for Melo trade?

It seems to me Melo would be a huge offensive upgrade over Deng, seeing as how he's not only a low-post scorer that you can run your offense through but also a semi-legit threat from three point land (a career high 35 percent last year) who stretches the D. Deng, of course, does neither, which I'm starting to think is a real problem, as his man can go and double down on our (already pretty meager) post players and still get back in time to the 15-20 ft range where Deng likes to hover for his jumpers. I'm well aware Melo brings certain "character" issues with him, but by all means picture me rolling my eyes while sitting jackknifed and repeatedly pumping my fist over my lower torso area.

Now, at first blush, it would appear that faced with those two prospective deals, Denver would obviously go for Detroit's offer: Billups is clearly better than Hinrich (23.6 PER last year to Kirk's shockingly low 13.1), while Deng and Tayshaun are probably a wash when you factor in Tayshaun's far superior defense (Deng's 17.0 PER was marginally better than Tayshaun's 15.6). But, in a couple ways, the Bulls' offer could be more appealing.

For starters, Deng (22) is five years younger than Tayshaun. At 27, Tayshaun is playing in the prime of his career, and yet he isn't putting up any better offensive numbers than Deng, who is almost certain to improve. In other words, with Prince you have a player who has reached the pinnacle of his talent, yet that pinnacle isn't noticeably higher than Deng, whose game is still on the upswing. Meanwhile, Hinrich (27) is four years younger than Chauncey. Now I'm sure that certainly for next season, you would rather have Chauncey Billups lead your team than Kirk. But how about after that, when Chauncey turns 33? At that point, I'd say all bets are off. (See also: Wallace, Ben.)

Which leads to the other reason the Bulls' offer might be more appealing than Detroit's: After next year, Billups has two more years left on his deal for $25 mil.; Kirk also has three years left on his deal, but his last two years only cost $18.5 mil. To a team with major luxury tax issues that's already locked into paying Nene and Kenyon Martin a combined $26 mil and $28 mil. over those two seasons, that savings could be awfully tempting, particularly since Deng (who presumably could be signed and traded with a 5-year, $55 mil. deal) would be making roughly the same that's due to Tayshaun ($31 mil. over the next 3 years).

I can't see this deal happening for a million reasons--from Pax's infatuation with "character" guys to the Bulls' overestimation of Deng (about which I might be writing more later). But I do think it would make a lot of sense.

10 Comments:

Anonymous Bench Duhon said...

Yes! I have been saying this exact thing ever since the rumors started about Melo being on the block. Nobody remembers Pippen cruising the streets with loaded guns. Who cares about character issues?!

10:35 AM  
Blogger T Dizzle said...

I thik this makes sense. I am not concerned with character issues, and yes I remember Pip's arrest for flashing a gun on a motorist. After Boston going from worst to first in a season with Garnett we should demand a trade for Melo! I am tired of "character" and our "core". What have they gotten us besides the first pick in the draft? Draft Rose send Hinrich packing and trade for Melo!

9:44 AM  
Anonymous bullshooter said...

But then why would you draft a speedy point/combo guard? You don't play an uptempo, trapping defense with 'Melo. You play a half-court, walk it up, dump it in to 'Melo offense, and a zone on defense. Not sure you wouldn't win more games that way, but it's not going to be much fun to watch.

3:15 PM  
Blogger Ty said...

What about defense? No one likes defense? Well, Carmelo doesn't like defense. Two guys who are all offense and no defense? Hmmm...

I don't want Anthony anywhere near this team. He dominates the ball too much (4th most in the league), and that's been w/ one of the other biggest 'ballhogs' in the league as well. Anthony would make the team better next year, but not in the long run.

I'm sorry, I want Rose handling the ball more than anyone else.

3:28 PM  
Blogger Ty said...

Ahhh.... bullshoooter and I agree on something.

3:29 PM  
Blogger T Dizzle said...

I guess I had not thought too much about the lapses on defense we would see. I guess I was just excited by the prospect of Melo.

3:29 PM  
Anonymous JoeJoe said...

He's a loser.(Melo) Don't play D either. Selfish. Doesn't make your TEAM better?

7:35 PM  
Anonymous joejoe said...

Somewhat like Jalen Rose in his later years, maybe more talented offensively.

7:37 PM  
Anonymous bullshooter said...

I wouldn't say he is a loser, but I would say he looks like he's enjoying all the money he is making. I'll wait until after the olympics to decide if he is wasting what could be a supremely talented career.

5:55 PM  
Blogger Zac said...

Like the idea. After the Bulls draft Rose (fingers crossed) I feel they will will still be a piece away. Melo is an incredible talent who is available at a seemingly reduced cost (Hinrich and Deng ?). We must get rid of Hinrich and Melo is better than Deng who was the most disappointing last year. Even though he doesn't play defense.

However I think that once we draft Rose the position that needs the most improvement will be SG. I think Deng gets significantly better with Roase at point. but at SG we have BG, Thabo and Hughes. With Thabo considered by many to be the SG of the future. I like Thabo and am a huge BG fan, but those guys would be mismatched most nights: I would like the Bulls to trade Hinrich, Thabo and Gooden to the 76ers for Andre Igoudala.
Rose/___
Igoudala/ BG
Deng/Noc
TT/ Noc
Noah/Gray

My other bright idea is to trade Hinrich and change for a pick between 9-12 so we can draft Roy Hibbert who I think Pax wanted last year had he entered the draft. Roy is a legit 7 footer who would add consistent offense to a 3 man rotation of TT Noah and Roy

9:47 AM  

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