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I guess it's signing the defensive SF and veteran PG. If we could sign Harpring and either Tim Hardaway, Mookie Blaylock or Kevin Ollie to one year deals, I would be happy.

Line up for 2002/03
PG: Crawford, Williams, Hardaway/Blaylock/Ollie
SG: Rose, Hassell, Mason
SF: Robinson, Harpring, Hoiberg
PF: Chandler, Fizer, Baxtor
C: Curry, Blount, Bagaric

If I'm JK, I would cut Bags now and sign Kevin Willis to be a mentor for Chandler or Curry. I have nothing against Bags. He may one day be a decent back up center but the Bulls can't afford to have two projects at center. If he doesn't do that, don't take up the 4th year option on Bags so he's a FA next year.
 

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I never slice.
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Why can't the Bulls afford to have two projects at center? To me that's better than having one project and one old fart who won't be around next year or the years after. Then, when we're ready to compete, we'll have one (hopefully) quality 5 and nothing. We might end up with the same thing if we keep Bags, or we might end up with a decent backup 5.

Why do so many assume that Hakeem has the least bit of interest in signing with a lousy team to mentor a 20 year old? Has he mismanaged his money that badly?
 

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Doesn't Hakeem make some absurd amount for the next two years?

As much as the Bulls have money to throw around, I don't think that I want an aged, injured Dream around on the cap when next summer hits.
 

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Sorry Kneepad , I got to disagree with you on this one

I am an advocate of trading for Akeem for a number of reasons.

Firstly , he is still a contributor . Just because his output is not what it was 5 years ago , I think that when you have been great and you do not produce at that same level - yet you can still play and are effective in a role , fans of the game don't forgive you for your declining output. The higher you've been , the further you have to fall in judgement. Last year , I saw maybe half a dozen Raps games and I can honestly put my hand on my heart and say that in my judgement , Hakeem was still a defensive presence . He didnt have the same zip on his low post moves where he always relied on the speed of his exquisite footwork , but the mechanics of his moves were still there. Similarly the zip in his rebounding capacity was not what it was 5 years ago but he relied more on smart positioning and "reading" position to still pull down around 7 - 8 boards a game in 25 something minutes he played for the Raps

Secondly , I think he could help Cartwright with Tyson's offensive post up game where Tyson seems to struggle with moves right now . Curry is an instinctive post player on offense and I think is more a natural than Tyson - but more than anything else he still needs to develop his left hand and confidence in going left off the right block . Too many times last season , Eddy fell into his comfort zone on the block going right and shooting right into the defender - consequently making him a little bit too easy to pick off. He got better as the season progressed. Whilst Eddy is a hell of an instinctive post up player , Tyson is one of the most exciting help defenders in the making running around - which he is , by virtue of his speed and athleticism . He seems to have a nose for the "read' of a play on the defensive end too . This anticipation combined with his speed and athleticism is what makes him an exciting defensive prospect. Both of them need work on their defensive footwork and the subtleties of playing man on man defense such as weight transference ( taking weight and releasing it to disrupt balance - timing etc ) I think they would learn a hell of a lot from Hakeem in scrimmages in this regard and being out on the floor with him in game type situations would onlu reinforce and accelerate the subtelties both need to learn in all aspects of their game. Who better to learn from than probably the most complete center that played the game during the late 80's and 90's. A championship center on the floor and in scrimmages that can directly instruct through physical example and a championship center on the sidelines that can instruct and motivate verbally.

Thirdly , Akeem takes the pressure of responsibility for Curry and Chandler off Cartwright directly that allows Cartwright to truly have a more holistic focus in what he is trying to achieve. Its a nice luxury to have with Akeem as this buffer zone

Fourthly, Akeem is in the books for 2 more years at a cost of around $5.5M a year . By big man standards , this is pretty reasonable when average big man money is around $4M to $5M. This is hardly an unreasonable cost for an experienced championship center that can assist in the development of two chmapionship centers that we aspire to develop for the purposes of spearheading our next championship push. If we can aim to back in the playoffs in 2 years in the final year of Akeem's contract , than such instruction and example in what it means being in the playoffs in terms of preparation and adjustments that need to be made to take it up a step , would ( IMO ) be invaluable .

At the very least even if you don't think Akeem would help he certaintly can't hurt . The reality is we need help at center/forward where a proven vet who can still contribute can come in and tighten the defense, score a bit , rebound .. whatever we need to adjust in what the game at that point dictates.

As to the issue of Akeem resigning , I would think that this would not even be an issue in 2 years anyway. We would probably have obtained what we need from him and he would doubtless be ready for retirement anyway.

However , having said all that , the Raps are not trading him - that's why they made Keon a full free agent. They have already made their choice and the decision Glen Grunwald has made appears more political rather than one based on pragmatism - in that they need a young F/C to develop beside AD more than what they need a vet F/C if they are both costing around the same type of money and there are luxury tax implications. Akeem has cred and currency . Diss Akeem and his agent in trading him after 12 months when he was a high profile feather in the cap signing , and GG runs the risk of being on the nose with other high profile free agent signings ( although I don't know why as they have no room for a long time to sign any significant difference maker free agents - they can't even hang on to their own )

It makes sense for them to deal Akeem but they won't
 

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FJ: You make an excellent argument for acquiring Akeem on one condition.

Will Akeem accept the role of a 10-20 mpg player who is mentoring our young players? Is that an alright way to finish out his fabulous career?

If the answer is yes, then there are a lot of positives of acquiring Akeem, as you mention. If not, I suspect he will retire once we trade for him or he will be somewhat of a cancer on the team. I really don't have any idea which way he will go on this one.

GG probably is not "unwilling" to trade Akeem. It's just that they need to dump a lot of salary in order to re-sign Keon. And he probably thought it wasn't fair to Keon to give him the impression that it was likely that he was going to be able to accomplish that.
 

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I never slice.
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FJ, I agree with NCBF that you make an excellent argument for the Bulls signing Hakeem.

However, you did not address the point I made about Hakeem's willingness to join a lousy team to backup a 20 year old. Do you think he'd willingly do it?

Also, I still feel a backup center needs to be developed at the same time Curry is. I'm with everyone else in their low opinion of Bags right at the moment, but he's got one more guaranteed year and I want to see him get some legitimate floor time to find out if he's worth keeping or not.

I still say coaches are for coaching, players are for playing. You want a coach for Curry and Chandler? Fine. Hire one.
 

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Quite true guys

But I would suspect that information would be known before any kind of a trade talks heated up . And if Akeem wouldnt want to know anything about us than its an easy decision to put the phone back in it cradle and leave GG alone.
 

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Originally posted by NCBullsFan

GG probably is not "unwilling" to trade Akeem. It's just that they need to dump a lot of salary in order to re-sign Keon. And he probably thought it wasn't fair to Keon to give him the impression that it was likely that he was going to be able to accomplish that.
And that is where your great idea about trying to get our hand on say Miami's trade exception comes into play
 

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1. Best for Hakeem MADE alot of sense to me BUT then the trade of Rush for Hunter happened and it makes no sense now. I've given up.

2. "Bad players make better coaches" is not a fair representation of an expressed viewpoint but I actually don't disagree in part. A head coach who deals with personalities and has to decide on playing time etc. is different in my opinion however from a coach/mentor who deals with a more technical agenda. I don't want these 2 to settle for being "effort" players only. I want them to be respected for their expertise at their position. The Bull have a new coach now ?Thornton(sic?) who seems like an upgrade over Wennington so that's nice, I guess.

3. FWIW FWF(on Real GM) made a case that big men development is "different"(this happened several months ago and he went into detail but I wouldn't do justice to what was posted so I've kept it simple) and that he thought Hakeem would be a good aquisition. (I think maybe point guard development might be more demanding as well but that's not on topic.) Anyway I bought into this view. He even suggested ERob for Hakeem. New convert that I was I agreed but later backslid and only seriously was for it if the Bull could use assets they weren't going to use anyway(Best,Dali) and/or play off of the Raptor desire to save $ and the Bull capacity to absorb some.

4. It makes no sense if you think that the Bull are going to be signing a major FA next year. I didn't and don't now.
Actual $ cost is ~ 12 mil/2 years which is less per year than what the fee for Professor jOakley was. It would a trade so he wouldn't have a choice but I don't want another malcontent ex-Raptor here any more than those that don't want Hakeem here.

5. I thought of it as a long term investment in TC & EC but one that is clearly not easily measureable or guaranteed. I thought/wanted TC & EC to be "the men" in the next Bull title run and wanted to do all that was reasonably possible to help them do this. Hakeem was the only candidate(other than possibly Kareem) who actually did what I wanted the 2 youngsters to do and his game was complete at both ends of the court and he seemed to have found self discipline off of it too. The complete package. I also thought there may have been a "stamp of approval" effect from other players/referees from him being seen as the tutor of the youngsters. This however is even more nebulous and of course I know the referees/NBA don't show favoritism. :D

6. It's clear now that there will be less of a skew to the front court with "Jay" aboard. Stronger players at other positions is a different but not necessarily worse way to accomplish the same goal.

7. It makes less sense if you think TC is a 4/3 than it does if you think he's a 5 in the making.

8. I actually once described "the Dreams" performance last year as a nightmare but when I actually looked at his numbers all I can say is that compared to what else is/was out there Hakeem's were on average at least as good if not better. I thought that in at least the playoff games I saw that he looked quite good actually. I think it's accurate however to expect that at his age the drop off could come quicker and more severely than it would for a younger player. I think BCH(?) made the distinction between a mentor and a contributor(on court) when commenting on Blount. For me with Hakeem it's more of a mentor thing but I still think it would be invaluable for these 2 young pups who have accomplished nothing on their own see Hakeem actually "do it" on occasion on the court in the NBA. I think there's enough left to do that.

9. As for the -maybe- "he wouldn't want to backup/teach 20 year olds on a losing team" concern, I agree it's a concern and cannot completely alleviate it. I can however direct you to the link on my signature. It's not alot to go on but it's enough for me.
 

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Man, I was just waiting for Sicky D to chime in on this one. This is his signature subject (literally too). I don't know where I am on this issue. I feel like I'm pinned between two very compelling arguements. Like with all theories it depends on some important variables. These are:

A) skill of Hakeem next year ON the court
B) skill of Hakeem following year ON the court
C) skill of Hakeem final year ON the court
D) willingness of Hakeem in teaching youngsters all three years off the court (and I say willingness, because in my mind, there is no reason why he wouldn't be a good role model and teacher. If Tyson and Curry didn't have a natural respect for their elders, then yeah maybe. But they're not like that. I know for sure that they would look to him as eager pupils. I only wonder if they would go all out against him in practice. Wouldn't that be kindof disrespectful?
E) The alternative (and I do mean in a player to fill the back-up C spot (Back-up Bags, please don't make me laugh), whatever it is. Who knows, maybe there is someone better out there who can fill both roles? (did somebody say Kurt Thomas?)
 

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Toronto Salaries

This year and next, no more.

I probably shouldn't have included this since it doesn't seem reliable but I did anyway since it's on topic.

True lies?
 

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Sicky if this is true, there still might be a chance of him buying into a different situation on a different team. Maybe he would see Chicago as a better place to be. If there is credence to these rumors then the possibility of the Raptors trading him becomes more likely - if of course anyone believes that he would actually play out his contract for their team. It sounds like a very unstable situation.
 
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