COMMENTARY | The Chicago Bulls should be trying to wash their hands of this season and start hording draft picks for the upcoming 2014 NBA draft.
The Knicks have been underachieving to start the season, and having Tyson Chandler sidelined with a fractured leg has made New York potentially open to the idea of trading for another big man. Shumpert appears to be one of the most movable pieces on the Knicks club. He is only making $1.7 million this season, and is under control for next season at a price tag of just $2.6 million.
Aside from the favorable financials, Shumpert could become a casualty of Knicks head coach Mike Woodson. The man pacing the sidelines in New York had to publicly deny allegations that he does not like Shumpert and would want to see him moved.
If the Knicks are looking to add size, the Bulls have Carlos Boozer and Taj Gibson with whom they could part. Boozer's contract is already rumored to be on the amnesty chopping block next season, while Gibson is a Faried-like power forward who could fit exactly what they Knicks are looking for.
Bringing the Oak Park native Shumpert to the Bulls would give Chicago a shoot guard/point guard hybrid, like Rose, who can initiate the offense while also being able to create his own shot. With Luol Deng, Jimmy Butler and Joakim Noah still on the roster, the Bulls are far from a cellar-dwelling team without Rose, but in order to reclaim their spot as one of the top teams in the East, the Bulls would have to find a capable scorer to replace Rose.
The team found that last year on its own bench when Nate Robinson slid into the starting rotation for the injured Rose and led the Bulls to a first-round victory over the Brooklyn Nets in the playoffs last season. But the high salaries of the top Chicago players made it impossible for the Bulls to bring back Robinson, and the team is now left without another viable scoring guard.
The Bulls would have to take on some additional contracts in order to make the deal work, such as bringing Ron "Metta World Peace" Artest back to the city that drafted him in 1999, but Shumpert would be a perfect fit in Chicago. As the best on-ball defender on the Knicks, Shumpert would be able to fit right into head coach Tom Thibodeau's defense-first style of play.
Shumpert's growth has been largely stunted in New York due to having to play behind Carmelo Anthony and Raymond Felton, but, in Chicago, he would get the chance to showcase his entire game.
Dalton Russell is Chicago native and longtime follower of the Bulls. His championship expectations were irrevocably ruined by the Michael Jordan-led teams of the '90s and now impatiently awaits the next great chapter of Bulls basketball.
- Sports & Recreation
- Iman Shumpert
- Chicago Bulls
- New York Knicks