Jabari Parker not the only Bull who should be on trade block
Jabari Parker not the only Bull who should be on trade block
The Bulls are working to trade Jabari Parker after things didn't work out in Chicago, but they should be looking to make other moves as well.
The Chicago Bulls' Jabari Parker experiment appears to be over not even halfway through his first season in his hometown. After a roller-coaster beginning to his Bulls career saw him go back and forth between starting and coming off the bench, Parker has been removed from the regular rotation, [ESPN's Malika Andrews first reported last week](http://www.espn.com/nba/story/_/id/25528771/jabari-parker-no-longer-part-chicago-bulls-regular-rotation). A day later, K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reported trade talks: <a href="https://twitter.com/KCJHoop/status/1073668223986515970?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1073668223986515970&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.si.com%2Fnba%2F2018%2F12%2F14%2Fjabari-parker-trade-rumors-bulls-power-forward-several-teams" class="embedly-card" data-card-width="100%" data-card-controls="1">Embedded content: https://twitter.com/KCJHoop/status/1073668223986515970?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1073668223986515970&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.si.com%2Fnba%2F2018%2F12%2F14%2Fjabari-parker-trade-rumors-bulls-power-forward-several-teams</a> It's a disappointing yet somewhat predictable outcome for the 23-year-old Chicagoan. The Bulls took a short-term gamble on Parker's talent after things didn't work out with the Milwaukee Bucks thanks to two ACL tears and other factors, but it took him a while to find his comfort level in Chicago. Then, after a decent stretch of games, Lauri Markkanen and Bobby Portis returned from injuries, creating a logjam at the power forward spot. The Bulls signed Parker to be the starting small forward, but former head coach Fred Hoiberg quickly realized that wasn't meant to be, something that was warned when he signed. And with new coach Jim Boylen prioritizing defensive effort, that meant no more Parker in the rotation. Parker played four minutes in Orlando on Thursday, Dec. 13, but has not gotten on floor in the three games since. Making a Parker trade difficult is that bloated $20 million salary. The second year is a team option, effectively making his contract an expiring deal, but the Bulls still have to match salaries in a trade. The Ringer's Kevin O'Connor [reported](https://www.theringer.com/nba/2018/12/17/18144188/nba-trade-season-primer) the Utah Jazz as a trade suitor, with Derrick Favors potentially being involved because of his awkward fit next to Rudy Gobert. Favors is making $16.9 million this season and then has a $16.9 non-guaranteed contract for 2019-20, and he can't be traded until Jan. 15. While Favors' fit next to Gobert isn't great, and the Jazz have struggled offensively this season, a straight swap doesn't make much sense. Chicago has little use for Favors and would likely want an asset attached, but it's hard to see Utah being that desperate, given the 27-year-old is a better overall player than Parker. If the Bulls want to get any kind of asset for Parker, it'll likely require taking on money past this season. While that may not be ideal when it comes to the free-agency chase this summer, Chicago isn't yet in position to attract big-time free agents thanks to all the issues this season. Using cap space to collect draft assets is smart during a rebuild, and something many thought the Bulls should've done instead of using it all on Parker this past summer. The Houston Rockets are turning things around and just went through the Carmelo Anthony situation, but maybe they'd take a chance on Parker in order to get off Brandon Knight's $15.64 million for next season. The Portland Trail Blazers could look to dump Evan Turner's $18.61 million for 2019-20. There are other teams with bad money out there. Ideally, Chicago would get a first-round pick back in these kinds of deals, but it's unclear if anything like that is being offered. Maybe even a couple of second-round picks would suffice. Another intriguing option would be talking to the Washington Wizards about Otto Porter Jr. The Wizards need to blow things up, and Porter has a massive contract they could be looking to get rid of. The 25-year-old is making $26.01 million this season, $27.25 million next season and then $28.49 million in 2020-21 as part of a fourth-year player option, which he'll almost certainly exercise. Porter may be underwhelming at that salary, but he's a good 3-and-D player who would slot right in at small forward. He shoots over 40 percent from 3-land for his career and doesn't need the ball to be effective. Taking on all that salary into 2020 would be tough, but again, the Bulls may not be serious players in free agency for a while. Also, the cap will increase in future years, and if Chicago needs to create space, there will be opportunities to do so down the line. The summer of 2020 is still far away. While the Bulls' first order of business is to trade Parker, they should also be shopping veterans Justin Holiday and Robin Lopez. Keeping veterans around a young team is nice, but both players are on expiring contracts and don't figure into the long-term plans. Chicago might as well try to get some value in a trade and go for a full-blown youth movement the rest of the season. Lopez and his $14.38 million expiring deal will be tough to trade given the size of the contract and the fact he's an NBA dinosaur with his plodding style of play at the center position. He may be more of a buyout candidate after the trade deadline, but that shouldn't stop the Bulls from seeking a deal. Holiday, on the other hand, should be coveted at his $4.38 million price tag. While his 3-point shooting has come down to earth after a hot start, he's still at 37.7 percent on 7.5 attempts per game ([note: he does have some wild home/road splits](https://stats.nba.com/player/203200/traditional/)). His recent struggles likely have to do with regression to the mean (35.5 percent for his career), but perhaps also due to the oversized role he's playing. With the Bulls short on the wing and dealing with injuries as well, the 29-year-old is at 35.0 minutes per game, a career-high mark by a good margin. Move Holiday to a smaller role as a reserve, and he's a nice shooter for a contender at 20-plus minutes per contest. Teams like the Rockets, Golden State Warriors, Philadelphia 76ers and Oklahoma City Thunder, to name a few, could all use more shooting off the bench. Getting a first-round pick back is almost out of the question, but the Bulls could push for a pair of second-round picks. The Cleveland Cavaliers got two second-round picks and a decent player in Alec Burks from the Jazz for Kyle Korver, a trade that helped set the market for bench shooters. It's unclear how hard the Bulls are shopping Holiday. In the immediate aftermath of the near-mutiny, [Yahoo's Vincent Goodwill and Chris Haynes reported](https://sports.yahoo.com/inside-turmoil-jim-boylens-chicago-bulls-193241523.html) that teams were "researching Holiday's availability," but it wasn't known if Chicago was engaging in trade discussions. [ESPN's Bobby Marks recently reported](http://www.espn.com/nba/insider/story/_/id/25459260/nba-trade-deadline-team-team-guide-moves-make) that "several teams have circled the guard as a top priority if Chicago makes him available." Given this, there's little excuse not to get something in return for Holiday before the trade deadline. Perhaps Holiday is even attached to Parker to get a better asset back in return. One other sleeper trade candidate is Bobby Portis, after he failed to sign an extension before this season. While the Bulls have talked up Portis as a member of their core and said they want to resume contract discussions in the summer, they could still consider moving him since he tops out as a bench guy behind Markkanen. Chicago would want a prime asset in return, which may be a long shot, but don't totally rule it out. __Daily contests:__ [Go perfect, win a BetChicago prize pack](https://betchicago.chalkline.com/)2018-12-20T16:05:34.460Z2018-12-20T11:05-05:00