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ATLANTA -- Because there will be no quality centers on the free-agent market this summer, the player who probably makes the most sense for the Bulls to pursue is forward Al Harrington of the Atlanta Hawks.

Harrington made it clear Wednesday night that he's definitely interested in the Bulls.

"Obviously, the season is still going on, and I'm still an Atlanta Hawk,'' he said before the Bulls and Hawks played at Philips Arena. "But I am going to free agency unrestricted, and I'm looking at every situation out there.

"What's going to be the biggest thing that's going to help me decide where I go is the winning factor. I'm definitely trying to get back to the playoffs.''

Harrington, 26, has been keen on the Bulls since the end of his time in Indiana. He reportedly asked the Pacers to trade him to the Bulls but instead was shipped to Atlanta in July 2004.

"The No. 1 thing is their tradition and their history, and then you look at the steps they're taking to get back to that level,'' Harrington said when asked why the Bulls are attractive. "Right now, I would love to be in the situation they're in, where they're fighting for their lives for a playoff spot and they have a very good chance of making it.''


His interest in the Bulls is more than just passing. He has told friends around the NBA that he admires coach Scott Skiles' system and likes the Bulls' style of play. Harrington, who's averaging 18.6 points and 6.9 rebounds this season, even went so far as to consider how he would fit in.

"I look at the way they play and they don't have any inside presence,'' he said. "That's something that I think I can fill for any team I go to, and definitely [for the Bulls].''





EDIT: not supposed to post entire articles, especially without a link!

http://www.suntimes.com/output/bulls/cst-spt-bullnt131.html
 

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Nocioni's stellar play is definitely making Harrington less attractive. Not only does Noch play both SF and PF effectively, but he's also 1 year younger and is much cheaper than what Harrington will likely command.

BUT...if we obtain some good center size in the draft, then I still think Harrington would be a good full-time PF, provided we surround him with size and rebounding. I think he's cut out for the type of system we have...team-oriented, move the ball, and wear other teams out by running the floor.

And as I've suggested a few other times, the wild-card option is that we dangle Luol Deng as trade bait along with someone else (Ben Gordon?) in the so-called "consolidation trade". The hope here is that we land a premier player (SG or PF, our two biggest needs) who can score 25 a game and not be a defensive liability. Then we can use free agent dollars to sign Al Harrington without worrying about log-jam. My dream off-season is trading Deng + Gordon for Bosh, then signing Al Harrington and drafting Brandon Roy. Which gives us a stud line-up of Hinrich, Roy, Harrington, Bosh, and Chandler, with Nocioni as our 6th man. But Raptors fans tell me that Bosh will not be traded for anyone, with few exceptions.
 

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as yodurk said, Nocioni is already doing what Harrington would be brought in to do. Why be redundent? Especially since Harrington will not come cheap! Would you be willing to pay nocioni the same amount?

Now that being said, Yodurk brought up, another point. If we trade for a center, a good young center using Nocioni in the package deal then Harrington would be back on the table. But personally I prefer, Gooden.

Harrington has publically spoken out all season about teams. Didnt he say something similar about playing for the knicks in madison square garden?
 

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truebluefan said:
Harrington has publically spoken out all season about teams. Didnt he say something similar about playing for the knicks in madison square garden?
There seems to be some mutual interest with the Knicks, but that is less likely due to money issues. The Knicks can only offer the MLE from being WAY over the cap. Or they can do a sign-and-trade. But I have a very hard time seeing the Hawks taking back anything on the Knicks' roster, except for the untradeable Channing Frye. MAYBE, the Hawks would take Jamal Crawford straight up...I think JC has 5 years left on his deal, with next year's salary being around $6.8M or so. That would be a similar starting salary for Al Harrington. It all depends on whether the Hawks like Jamal, and whether they think it's worth taking on his contract.
 

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yodurk said:
Nocioni's stellar play is definitely making Harrington less attractive. Not only does Noch play both SF and PF effectively, but he's also 1 year younger and is much cheaper than what Harrington will likely command.

BUT...if we obtain some good center size in the draft, then I still think Harrington would be a good full-time PF, provided we surround him with size and rebounding. I think he's cut out for the type of system we have...team-oriented, move the ball, and wear other teams out by running the floor.
This is becoming my take on it as well. 2 months ago I was firmly planted in the Harrington/Nazr free agency plan. That is what I was pulling for.

But Noc is blowing up. And it isn't just a hot streak. His whole game and style of play is changing and evolving before our eyes.

I still would back a Harrington signing because I think it provides flexibility for the much needed consolidation trade down the line. But I'm less married to the idea now than I used to be. I'm starting to think more and more about how Nene would look in a Bulls uni.
 

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http://www.dailyherald.com/sports/bulls.asp?id=177168

mcgraw also writes about this today (narek posted this in the postgame thread already, but i'll post it here)

“I think that could happen,” Harrington said Wednesday. “I think he enjoyed his Chicago days. He told me recently he wouldn’t mind playing in Chicago again or Indiana. I think he liked those two.

“I have a lot of love for them. (Kendra’s) a scorpion woman. She was always the best. Antonio’s definitely one of my mentors in this league. In times when I need advice, he’s one of the first people I call.”

Harrington, 26, may not need Davis’ advice this summer. Word is, he’s looking for a more structured environment and is hoping to sign with the Bulls.

ok. he really didn't call everyone's favorite nba wife a scorpion woman! inside joke!

:laugh:
 

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Ron Cey said:
I'm starting to think more and more about how Nene would look in a Bulls uni.
I think Nene would excel in this system. He hasn't gotten many minutes PERIOD in denver plus the guards on that team were never pass first (cept miller but he's changed since his cleveland days). We'd have guards trying to get it inside to him CONSTANTLY, he's strong and rarely gets handled in the post. He'd be my #1 choice if I were Paxson but with K-Mart consistently being injured in Denver, it may be hard to pry him away. He did make it know that he wasn't a fan of being the 3rd big in their rotation though.

If we could get Nene, Mohammed & draft Thomas or Aldridge. I think we'd be set to atleast go to the 2nd round next year & even further when Shaq continues to downslide.
 

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I don't understand why people feel depth is a bad thing. How is having Harrington going to make Noc less effective? Harrington isn't going to take away Noc minutes. He's going to take away O'Fella/Songaila/Malik/Sweets minutes. Those are minutes I'd love to give to someone else (though Malik continues to contribute and Sweets seems to be improving). This is the second season in a row where Deng has had to miss crucial games in a play-off battle. How sweet would it be right now if we had Harrington on the current roster?

I just don't get it, I guess. Here's a FA who has solid numbers and a positive attitude who WANTS to come here. What am I missing?
 

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Wynn said:
I don't understand why people feel depth is a bad thing. How is having Harrington going to make Noc less effective? Harrington isn't going to take away Noc minutes. He's going to take away O'Fella/Songaila/Malik/Sweets minutes. Those are minutes I'd love to give to someone else (though Malik continues to contribute and Sweets seems to be improving). This is the second season in a row where Deng has had to miss crucial games in a play-off battle. How sweet would it be right now if we had Harrington on the current roster?

I just don't get it, I guess. Here's a FA who has solid numbers and a positive attitude who WANTS to come here. What am I missing?
harrington is not what the bulls need in a power forward .

he doesn't rebound well , doesn't block shots, isn't a really good post defender .

like nocioni, harrington is a tweener , a big 3 /small 4.

its a waste of money and cap space.
 

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Wynn said:
See, this is the part I don't get. What has Nene ever done? Add that he's coming off a season-long injury.

I still don't get it.

he fits the bill.

the bulls main weaknessess are nene's stregnths ...harrington isn't going to make the bulls a better rebounding team at the 4, he gets 7 a game in 37 minutes a game. he avg. 0.16 blocks agame. he'll make the bulls worse at the suff they are already bad at , its hard to make a positive difference with that working against you.

nene is the tough, pyhsical, pyhsically superior athletic post player the bulls need .

the bulls are either fat ,small or skinny on the interior , another short, perimeter based power player would not make the big difference to me that other seem to think it would.
 

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Da Grinch said:
he fits the bill.

the bulls main weaknessess are nene's stregnths ...harrington isn't going to make the bulls a better rebounding team at the 4, he gets 7 a game in 37 minutes a game. he avg. 0.16 blocks agame. he'll make the bulls worse at the suff they are already bad at , its hard to make a positive difference with that working against you.

nene is the tough, pyhsical, pyhsically superior athletic post player the bulls need .

the bulls are either fat ,small or skinny on the interior , another short, perimeter based power player would not make the big difference to me that other seem to think it would.
This would seem to go along with my statement that Harrington fits here IF we acquire some size as well. Harrington is a pretty average rebounder, maybe even below average. But surround him with Deng/Noch at the 3, who are both excellent rebounders at their position...and sign/draft someone like Aldridge, Shelden, O'Bryant, Przybilla, Mohammad, etc...and I don't see much of a rebounding disadvantage for this team.
 

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yodurk said:
This would seem to go along with my statement that Harrington fits here IF we acquire some size as well. Harrington is a pretty average rebounder, maybe even below average. But surround him with Deng/Noch at the 3, who are both excellent rebounders at their position...and sign/draft someone like Aldridge, Shelden, O'Bryant, Przybilla, Mohammad, etc...and I don't see much of a rebounding disadvantage for this team.

6.9 rebounds in 36.8 minutes is not avg. or even below avg. its actually bad for a power player .

curry is considered a below avg. rebounds at 6.1 for 26.1 min. currently

curry was considered horrible last year with his 5.4 boards in 28.7 min. and its slightly better than harrington's rebounding rate this season.

i doubt you called curry's rebounding last season avg. or maybe even below avg. and curry had noce and deng rebounding with him, plus AD along with chandler...but its not like you can play so many people at once its just harrington, a good rebounding 3 and whomever in the post and you cant always count on rooks instantly being good rebounders, sometimes they develop into them ...sometimes they dont.
 

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Harrington's rebounding numbers are not impressive. That much is undeniably true. But I think they are a little low, in part, because he plays the 3/4 in Atlanta.

If Harrington played the 4 exclusively for a long stretch of games, I suspect his numbers would be better than they are. That said, I've no doubt that both Nene and Gooden would be better on the glass.

For me, Harrington is still a good option. Ideal? No. But a good option nonetheless. I have trouble trusting Gooden, I don't know why. I completely trust Harrington.
 

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Ron Cey said:
For me, Harrington is still a good option. Ideal? No. But a good option nonetheless. I have trouble trusting Gooden, I don't know why. I completely trust Harrington.
I'm with you on this one. Gooden fits better if you are looking purely at the way each player plays the game, what with his rebounding and better interior scoring ability. But Harrington seems like he'd fit into this team's culture perfectly, while Gooden seems like a space cadet who might mail it in once he signs his deal.

I hope Nene makes a strong recovery. He fits our needs quite well.
 
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