Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Hired Guns

The Mutumbo to the Rockets rumor is just making too much sense:

Bulls, Rockets still talking: The Bulls' efforts to trade newly acquired center Dikembe Mutombo are focused almost entirely on Houston. The Rockets have no backup center and used their midlevel exception to sign two free-agent guards Monday - Bob Sura and Charlie Ward.

The Bulls would like to acquire veteran shooting guard Eric Piatkowski (two years, $5.75 million) for Mutombo (one year, $4.5 million).

The Rockets have a trade exception from the Tracy McGrady deal that can cover the difference between the two salaries. The teams also have discussed adding players, such as Adrian Griffin or free agent Scott Padgett.

While I kind of labeled Mutumbo as useless in my last entry, maybe a backup center role with a slow-down, defensive coach like Jeff Van Gundy will work. And for the Bulls, Piatkowski is exactly what Paxson is looking for at the moment. A tall guard(6'7") who can shoot. His FG% was down in an injury-plagued season with Houston, but his career stats suggest he would be a nice gun off the bench.  

If Pax can't facilitate another deal, the team still has around $2m of their mid-level exemption(I'm considering Nocioni signed) along with the $1.6m veteran exemption. These 2 numbers cannot be combined, so its really gonna come down scrapin the bottom of the barrel. Names like Calbert Chaney and Hubert Davis(thank god Ron Mercer is off the market). Although if you remember about a month ago Euro guard Arvydas Macijauskas was heavily reported to be of interest to the Bulls.  While not as tall as Piatkowski, he is also a reputed shooter.

Hopefully Paxson can find one somewhere, and preferably not from the line at Krispy Kreme or Social Security Office. Another shooter on the team would take the load off of Hinrich and Gordon, and free up Eddy Curry in the middle. You know, so Eddy can pass it over his head and into the 5th row.