UPDATE: 6:04 PM: Part one of the plan is coming together — the Bulls have an agreement with Carlos Boozer.
Now, either LeBron changes his mind and comes to town, and they are instantly right there with the Lakers; or he doesn’t, they get a shooter like Allen or Redick, and they are still right near the top of the East. Things are still good in Bulls land.
2:22 pm: Next season, the Chicago Bulls are still going to be a good team.
Today, they feel like the losers in free agency. The team that cleared out cap space — trading away Kirk Hinrich to have space to sign almost two max free agents — yet they are coming away with none of the big three. Dwyane Wade said it was close, but that when Chris Bosh agreed to Miami he realized the two needed to pair up.
Harsh. But not the end of the world.
In fact, the Bulls could be better than the Heat next year.
The Bulls have two quality young players in Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah — they are essentially a poor man’s Bosh and Wade. And they are not that far behind. And they are improving.
But Bosh and Wade are not going to have much around them. Right now the Heat roster consists of Mario Chalmers and Michael Beasley, and the Heat have spent all summer trying to move Beasley but nobody will take him on.
The Heat must to build a team from scratch, basically. Maybe they get Brandon Haywood and Udonis Haslem and a nice point guard. But there will not be much depth. It will be a two man show.
The Bulls, on the other hand, have a lot cap space and maybe could sign Carlos Boozer (and not just to lure LeBron). Chicago has already started negotiating with him. Then all they’d really lack is a sharpshooter — like free agents JJ Redick and Ray Allen.
Picture that roster: Rose, Redick, Luol Deng, Boozer and Noah. Taj Gibson is the first guy off the bench.
That is a good team. One that would be better than Miami this year. Maybe even better than where LeBron lands.