Ask Sam Mailbag: 06.15.18

I'm grateful the LeBron Finals are over.  It was tiring, listening to most of the media talk about LeBron, LeBron vs MJ etc.  The constant bashing of his teammates. Unless I missed it, I didn't hear LeBron stand up for his teammates.  Its difficult for them to get involved when he always wants the ball in his hands. Without game momentum, he crumbles.  He gets a foul called on him, he yells at the ref. He turns it over, he looks around in different directions. If his teammates commit a foul or turnover, he yells at them. Game 1..... He couldn't move on and he said it was his most difficult loss ever. They had OT and choked. He's got a broken hand etc. He ruined the Finals for me, or maybe it was the media.  On ESPN.com... The next day.. They had LeBron as the main article. Not the champion Warriors. I'm sick of it.  I can't wait for next season so Bulls fans can focus on the Bulls and block out LeBron news and LeBron excuses.  Did the media makes excuses for Dirk and the Mavs when they played Miami in the Finals?  I'm tired of the comparisons to MJ. They are both great players, different positions. They argue that LeBron doesn't have a hall of famer like Jordan had Pippen. Pippen wasn't a hall of famer when they won their first title. He barely made his first all Star game that year, if i remember correctly. Excuse after excuse.  Ugh

Victor Devaldivielso

I see the Grizzlies are interested in giving up their no. 4 pick if someone will take on Parsons. Could we swap our no. 21 for their 4 and then swap Asik for Parsons? Maybe throw in a future 2nd rounder or some roles players too. We would suck up an extra $25mil per/year and they shred the cash. But hey, we aren't making the top 6 in the east for 2 years anyway. With a 4, 7 and three point shooting from Parsons (when he plays), could be another step forward. Elite free agents aren't coming either until some of these young guys we have really develop and we at least make the playoffs. We could try and move Parsons in 1 yr when another lottery team will suck up a salary (Atlanta). Probably not enough for the Grizzlies though.
Andrew Brown

You've mentioned that Trae Young could make an effective 3rd guard if drafted by the Bulls. Might the Bulls consider moving Dunn to shooting guard and LaVine to small forward in order start Young at point guard?
Brent Finger

I know this looks like an idotic question but is there a possibility that D-Rose comes back to the Bulls? We were interested in a reunion last summer and I feel like that if we were battling Minnesota to acquire him, I feel like Derrick would choose us as he's from Chicago and it's an offer he can't refuse. I get that we already have a point guard in Kris Dunn but Rose could be a mentor to him and he'd give us valuable minutes off the bench which he showed that he could do during the playoffs. I think it could work as he'd probably be aiming for a relatively cheap deal that wouldn't hurt our cap going forward and he'd be playing in his hometown which is an offer that I think any athlete wouldn't be able to refuse.
Art Alenik

Bulls seem to be trying hard to convince onlookers that they are interested in Trey Young. They're not. It will take 4 years for him to sniff the level that Dunn is currently playing at. I don't see a scenario where the Bulls draft him over Wendell Carter or even Mikal Bridges. First there was a report that they're "enamored" with Young. Now there's a report saying that there displeased with Dunn's work ethic. Do they think Orlando will fall for this?  Either that, or the media is flat out making this stuff up. Unless Bamba falls, Wendell Carter Jr. is the obvious, Roquan Smith pick for the Bulls.
Yuriy Fomin

There are pictures of Dunn working out at the Bulls facilities with other players. It Sounds to me more like Tre Young's agent trying to stir up interest for his client after the earlier report of Tre Young possibly being drafted by the Bulls. Now reports are Phoenix trading their 16th pick to move into the top 10 to possibly draft him. A lot of rumors will be flying this week going into next week's draft.
Josh Levin

Is there a win / win for the Bulls with Cavs? Obtain 8th pick for 22nd is win for Bulls.
Freeing up cap space for Cavs by trading Love to Bulls for Holiday, Grant & Felicio (or Lopez) and use Mirotic trade exemption. Cavs would use LeBron at 4 spot. Target Paul George or CP3 or ...?
Wayne Warner

There was an article from Bleacher Report that asserted that the Bulls' medical staff is incompetent. Have you heard these assertions before? There's a lot of scrutiny surrounding Missouri standout Michael Porter Jr., and it's not because of his talent. It all comes down to health. Teams are unsure about his back.
Porter underwent surgery to supposedly correct the issue that ended his freshman season with the Tigers, but he's being extremely selective with his medical records. According to the St. Louis Post Dispatch, Porter took a physical with the Chicago Bulls medical team instead of releasing his medical information to teams. Additionally, he'll be holding his own pro day today in Chicago instead of working out for teams in their house, forcing teams to rely on the medical report by the Bulls medical team.

Kirk Landers

Curious on your thoughts about Bulls trading back if there isn't anyone franchise changing at #7 to get more pieces to the puzzle.  For example, Trade the  #7 to the Clippers for #12 and Tobias Harris or DeAndre Jordan (if he agrees to sign with the Bulls). Potentially, can still draft upside players like Miles Bridges, Robert Willams, Lonnie Walker, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Kevin Knox, Colin Sexton.  If they view a player at that 7 slot to be a franchise player... whether that is Porter or Young that they wouldn't get later. They don't have a lead player; Harris is very good but not a top player to build around.
Sam Shahpar

Reports are that Love will be on the market if the Cavaliers can't resign LeBron. Do you see a team like Philadelphia wanting to get Love in exchange for their #10 overall selection along with salary?  Perhaps Charlotte could be the other option if they want to create a playoff team with Love and Walker. The Clippers sound like a nice idea given their combo picks.
Tom Plonowski

This is from the NBA draftnet twitter: “Hearing teams behind ATL think there's a good chance PG Trae Young gets taken at 3... Hawks GM Travis Schlenk was with Golden State when they drafted Steph Curry in 2009, and may see enough similarities to roll the dice on him with the 3rd pick.”
Mike Sutera

Lebron talks about being with high IQ players. Seems to me the perfect fit is San Antonio, whether Kawhi stays or not. Can they afford Lebron and if so, do you hear talk of that?
Abe Rotbart

Roughly ten years ago, I remember you were calling for the disband of Washington Wizards pre-school composed of John Wall, Nick Young, Andray Blatch and Javale McGee. And it did happen in 2012, when Nick Young, Andray Blatche and Javale McGee eventually got traded. Back then, did it crossed your mind that Nick Young and Javale McGee would win a championship (two for Javale now), sooner than John Wall?
Peter Jimenez

I'm wondering what the Bulls could do to take advantage of the LeBron James free agency.  The Bulls can offer a soft landing spot for the Cavs over-salaried players (George Hill - 19.0M, Trystan Thompson 17.5M, JR Smith 14.7M, Jordon Clarkson 12.5M next season).  A trade could involve a third team like Charlotte, Denver, Clippers, Memphis with players like Kemba Walker, Nicolas Batum, Wilson Chander, Lou Williams and Mike Conley - assuming those are LeBron's types of talented and cerebral players that can improve the Cavs.  Or, perhaps the Bulls can help with LeBron to the Rockets manuever.  Ryan Anderson's $40/2years contract is a problem for Houston's roster.  I'm not sure Houston has anything of value to make a trade work.  GarPax have emphasized roster flexibility and now might be the perfect time to cash in.  I think there are going to be some bold moves between now and the draft.
Mark Schweihs

The Bulls should target Clint Capela this offseason. The Rockets still need to sign Paul and Lebron this offseason and Bulls have cap space. The FA 2019-2020 is mediocre aside from a couple of young guys who will resign with their teams and Green/Leonard... the Bulls aren't getting either. Kris as a frontline defender and Clint as the anchor is a good combination. Then pray like hell that Bridge's skill transfers to the NBA or MPJ doesn't destroy his back.
Matt Ruth

How about Lebron to Celts;  Kyrie to Minn  and Wiggins to Cleve;  Everybody wins: Boston gets the final piece; Cleveland gets a young budding superstar;  Minn gets him out and Kyrie had Minn on the list of teams he would go to;  doesn't help Minn D tho.Works on trade machine, Minn have to get rid of Teague maybe?
Trip Radcliffe

I've read multiple reports that the Bulls may look to draft a PG next week. Personally I liked what I saw from Kris Dunn last year. I thought he showed good playmaking ability and on the ball defense and I figured he'd be a foundational piece going forward. Also what type of market do you think there'll be for LaVine in restricted FA coming off injury? Do you think he'll resign with the Bulls? What if another team offers him a max contract? I'd like to see the Bulls add to their core and not detract from it. If any of the coveted bigs or Porter Jr are available at seven I'd much rather the Bulls go that route than PG.
Scott Lucas

I would still go for an 2 way wing such as Mikal Bridges or Kevin Knox since I believe Lauri will be your center during crunch time. They can guard the best player on the other team, plus can score without the ball. Kevin Knox intrigues me, good athlete plus he had that serviceable one hander that he can rely to to score. Reminds me of Derrick Rose's one handers. Can the Bulls trade up from 22 to try to get him?
King Berango

Lauri Markkanen had a great rookie season this year and demonstrated some intriguing handles and a fairly high basketball IQ. With the Bulls saying Lauri will be working on his dribbling and with more and more players like Ben Simmons and Giannis Antetokounmpo acting as point forwards and leading their teams, do you think it would be possible for Lauri to be trained as a point forward as well?
Andrew Roo

If you were in Lebron James' shoes,  what will you do this summer in free agency?
Frederick Ong

I know this sounds crazy but do you think a team would/should offer LBJ the position of player/coach in order to try to jump to the front of the queue in the LBJ sweepstakes?  We all know that he has been the de facto coach in Cleveland, except when something goes wrong in which case it is then Ty Lue's fault.  LBJ has always struck me as having a basketball IQ that is off the charts.  Bill Russell did it, so why not James?
Bruce Berger