Feb 28, 2006 5:57 AM EST
Look for Tim Thomas to go West after his buyout from Chicago, the Newark Star-Ledger is reporting, after Bulls GM John Paxson told agent Arn Tellem that he is determined to give Thomas the money he has left on his $14 million contract and allow him to become a free agent, but only if Thomas subsequently signs with San Antonio or Phoenix.
Although no agreement has been reached between Thomas and the Bulls, the latter have the upper hand with the March 1 deadline just around the corner. Players who are not waived before Wednesday are not eligable for the playoffs.
So once again it comes down to money for Tim Thomas. Does he take a lower buyout in exchange for full freedom in choosing a new team this season, or does he take all the money and become a Spur or Sun?
Feb 27, 2006 5:29 AM EST
Bulls head coach Scott Skiles has tried to put an end to the notion that he has his favorites on the Bulls, most notibly guard Kirk Hinrich, according to a report in the Chicago Tribune. The denial comes just two days after a published report portrayed a chilly disconnection between Ben Gordon and Skiles.
Gordon disputed the claims last week, and Skiles said the depiction is "totally false."
"Anybody that has seen us practice or has been around me for any length of time knows I don't have any pets," Skiles said.
"I'm in many ways harder on Kirk than anyone else. Sometimes your best player, if he can take it, there's nothing wrong with staying on top of him. We feel we give Ben an awful lot of leeway."
There is a belief Skiles cannot get along with a star player because he is too stubborn to bend here and there. That could come to the forefront this summer when the Bulls pursue an established scorer. Paxson said he doesn't foresee a problem.
"If it is, maybe it's the type of guy we don't want," he said.
Whomever they get will not receive special treatment, Skiles said. "It's just my philosophy."
Feb 24, 2006 1:51 AM EST
There were some last-minute overtures for free agent Al Harrington, including a call from the Chicago Bulls, believed to be one of the teams targeting a player sure to be one of the most coveted free agents on the market this summer.
And the New York Knicks have stayed in touch with Hawks general manager Billy Knight throughout the season in their pursuit of Harrington.
"Don't they say you can't believe everything you read?" Harrington said and then laughed. "The smart thing to do sometimes is to sit back and really evaluate a situation first and then make a move."
Harrington's agent, Andy Miller, said they would let the "smoke clear" from the trade deadline before discussing his client's options for the summer.
Feb 24, 2006 1:31 AM EST
The Bulls' trade deadline morning and afternoon saw minor conversations that avoided discussions around their 'core,' namely Ben Gordon, who had been the subject of trade rumors.
Also, unlike the Knicks, who see expiring contracts as an opportunity to bring in expensive talent, the Bulls elected not to move Tim Thomas.
"I never talked to anybody about our core," general manager John Paxson said. "I was not going to do that. I talked about some of our [draft] picks to see if we could significantly improve, but [key players] weren't out there this time around."
For the Bulls to consider trading Gordon, a team needed to offer a star player in return. That didn't happen.
"I'd have to think I'm getting a better player, a better talent, something that makes us a better team," Paxson said. "Ben has something that makes him different from a lot of NBA players. He has an ability to score when it matters. That's a very valuable commodity."
Paxson said he isn't counting on the free-agent market, which is expected to feature one of the weaker classes in recent times, but will look to make major moves via trades.
"I do think in the summer, that's when teams try to make over their roster more than any other time," Paxson said. "We'll have discussions with a lot of teams this summer about players who are under current contract, not just the free-agent market.
Feb 23, 2006 8:27 PM EST
After the Chicago Bulls were unable to find a taker for Tim Thomas, they will begin discussing a contract buyout with the forward, general manager John Paxson said.
Thomas, earning approximately $14 million in the final year of his contract, hopes to join a playoff team. Players waived after March 1 are not eligible for the postseason.
"We are working on a way to resolve it," Paxson said. "My only issue is I don't want Tim to go to a direct competitor with us ? someone we're chasing, whatever."
Feb 23, 2006 9:12 AM EST
Tim Thomas has expressed interest in joining New Jersey, San Antonio, Miami or Philadelphia should the Chicago Bulls not be able to trade his expiring contract today and a buyout is reached, but Thomas has made it clear to North Jersey that a buyout will not come cheap.
Negotiations for a buyout have not been discussed between the parties, with Thomas still owed roughly $6 million of the $13.95 million he is contracted to collect this season.
Thomas said Wednesday that he wouldn't accept less buyout money than the sum he is owed to officially part ways with the Bulls.
"I hope it's not one of those things where I have to sit out a whole year," said Thomas. "I don't think it's going to get that far because I think they'll do what's best for their organization and we'll both move forward."
Feb 22, 2006 1:49 AM EST
Gregg Popovich had a good relationship with Latrell Sprewell when both were in Golden State. When the Spurs discussed trying to trade for Sprewell three summers ago, assistant coach P.J. Carlesimo said he would have no problem reuniting with the player who choked him.
"He's a fantastic competitor," Popovich said. "We've talked about him, and he's somebody I've thought about for a long time. But at this point we're not sure if taking on another person even makes sense or if he'd even be willing to do something like that."
Tim Thomas also is a possible player that the Spurs can sign if he is bought out by Chicago.
Feb 22, 2006 1:02 AM EST
With the league's trade deadline looming at 2 p.m. Thursday, several Bulls players were asked about possible trades, most notably Ben Gordon.
But as of Tuesday night, general manager John Paxson had no deal in the works involving Gordon, a source said.
Gordon said he is not worried about trade speculation. He also said he hopes his recent scoring surge makes it too difficult for Paxson to trade him. He has scored 30 points or more four times this month, and his timing couldn't be better.
"Hopefully what it will do is make me more valuable to the team so I won't be traded," Gordon said. "It never hurts to play well."
Feb 21, 2006 9:14 PM EST
Ben Gordon has been the subject of trade rumors for several months and on Tuesday he made it clear that he'd prefer to remain in Chicago.
"It's out of my hands," Gordon said Tuesday, acknowledging his name has surfaced in a few trade rumors. "I'm just going to continue to prepare for the games and keep a positive mentality (that) there's no doubt I'll be here.
"It's just another bridge that young players have to cross if their name is mentioned in some sort of trade rumors - or even if it's fact-based," coach Scott Skiles said. "Guys need to get used to that at this level."
Feb 19, 2006 11:53 PM EST
One free agent the Bulls figure to look at this summer is Chicagoan Nazr Mohammed, who had a career-best 20 rebounds in 36 minutes off the Spurs' bench last week against the 76ers. After starting for the champion Spurs last season, Mohammed fell behind Rasho Nesterovic because of defensive deficiencies.
During the summer, he turned down a four-year extension from the Spurs worth in the $25 million range. He said he wanted to wait until the summer when he would become a free agent and be eligible for a five-year deal. "I would be lying to say I haven't thought about it at all," Mohammed said.
Chicago Bulls Archives
Feb 19, 2006 | Sun-Sentinel
Bulls general manager John Paxson said he's been talking to many teams about trade scenarios with the NBA trade deadline six days away.
SI has Jermaine O'Neal potentially going to Chicago this summer for Kirk Hinrich and the Knicks' unprotected lottery pick, which was received in the Eddy Curry trade.
John Paxson would like to add a proven low-post scorer, which the Bulls have lacked since dealing Eddy Curry to New York before the season.
The Chicago Bulls have had no luck in their efforts to move Tim Thomas and his expiring contract of nearly $14 million.
Feb 13, 2006 | Daily Herald
One trade rumor that has been out there for more than a week is the Bulls sending guard Chris Duhon to the Cleveland Cavaliers for power forward Drew Gooden.
Tim Thomas claims that the Nets have talked to his agent, and he has no problem playing with Jason Collins should the Bulls buy him out.
Feb 09, 2006 | Chicago Tribune
Feb 08, 2006 | Plain Dealer
Feb 07, 2006 | Chicago Tribune
Feb 07, 2006 | Deseret News
Feb 06, 2006 | Press Release
Feb 06, 2006 | Daily Herald
The Bulls and Cavaliers have had trade discussions about 6-foot-10 power forward Drew Gooden, according to a league source.
Feb 03, 2006 | Daily Herald
Feb 02, 2006 | New York Post
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