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good questions this week and relevant answers....


How much money do the Bulls have to spend this off-season? It seems to me that they have more than the mid-level exception since the contracts of Jamal Crawford and Marcus Fizer expire. Couldn't they make a run at Quentin Richardson or Manu Ginobli? Why can't the Bulls have as high a payroll as the Dallas Mavericks? -- Jim Fleming, Crown Point, Ind.

You have more questions than the Bulls have money. Assuming the roster stands as is until after the trade deadline and assuming that the Bulls let Fizer and Crawford walk for nothing this summer, their payroll for next season would be close to $40 million. The salary cap is projected to be around $45 million. Thus, staying "capped out" is almost preferrable because it gives the Bulls the mid-level salary-cap exception, which is typically around $4.5 million. That $40 million also doesn't take into account a rookie contract from the 2004 NBA Draft, which, at this point, will be a high one. As for having a higher payroll, Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf will gladly pay the luxury tax -- if the team is winning. They're not even close, so the payroll will stay out of luxury tax land for now



KC Johnson on the Bulls
 

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At this point, who think's we're clinging to hope beyond logic that Curry becomes a superstar player?

KC says he'd hold on to him because of his "offensive talent" and because we've already come so far with him.

In light of his conclusion that Curry doesn't have the kind of work ethic that a guy like O'Neal has, and his obvious flaws in defense, rebounding, and conditioning, this increasingly seems to me like a fool's hope.

We all want it to happen, but I don't think it really will happen. I think Curry will eventually become a more consistent version of what he is now... occasionally a very good offensive player who's mostly out of shape and not very good at much else. Ultimately an ok to above average player, but not a difference-making player.
 
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