9:02 AM CDT, July 19, 2012
As Omer Asik moves closer to wisely taking all that money the Houston Rockets are stupidly offering, the Bulls reportedly are interested in Darko Milicic, who played for the Timberwolves last season.
No, wait, it was more like Milicic sat for the Timberwolves last season.
Think about that: The Bulls are sweet on a guy who couldn’t start for a last-place team. Yeah, that’ll show Miami.
Milicic is a 7-footer who couldn’t grab four rebounds a game and couldn’t shoot 50 percent. He’s also one of the worst free-throw shooters in the league, so there you go: Milicic isn’t good enough to start and isn’t good enough to finish lest he get the ball at the end of close game and be forced to make important free throws.
You know, like Asik, who pulled off the cute trick of blowing clutch free throws and then choking a gimme at the end of the playoff game that ended the Bulls’ season in Philadelphia.
So, that’s where the Bulls are, fans: Looking as if they won’t match the Rockets’ offer to Asik and turning to Milicic to fill that critical void at backup-big-guy-who-can’t-score.
The Bulls would be losing one of the most-stone-handed players in the league and replacing him with one of the biggest draft failures.
Other NBA teams are talking about moving the top centers in the league. The Bulls are doing the Omer-Darko paso doble. Hel-lo.
Bulls fans should be frustrated. I assume Bulls fans are still out there, no matter how hard management has tried to kill them off with the way it is moving.
Or not moving.
If there’s a plan, it’s not apparent. It’s not like the Bulls have been inert. Inept, maybe. But not totally couch potatoes who are binge-viewing the new season of “Beavis and Butt-head.’’
The Bulls have brought some bodies. Kirk Hinrich and Vladimir Radmanovic, for instance. They both played for the Atlanta Hawks, a team that was never going to win anything, so, yeah, they seem perfect for these Bulls.
I continue to look for a plan. I might be an idiot, but I can’t connect these dots.
My plan, meanwhile, starts with using the amnesty provision on Carlos Boozer the way Minnesota told Milicic to get out and stay out. The argument I hear against that idea this season is the Bulls need someone to score. No matter how inept Boozer is on defense, he can still score. Without Derrick Rose for most of the season, and perhaps without injured and gimpy Luol Deng and Joakim Noah, as well, the Bulls will need points.
Well, no, maybe not. Points won’t do the Bulls any good in a season they apparently are just writing off. That’s the closest thing to a Bulls plan I can see: lip service.
It’s a bad plan and it lacks honest self-scouting. Specifically this: Bulls management has not shown it can land a franchise-changing, championship-caliber free agent, so its only hope is the draft.
The Bulls whiffed during the mother of all free-agent summers in 2010 and got stuck with Boozer. We’re still looking around for the “Punk’d’’ cameras. Future free-agent classes appear to be drying up, and for whatever reasons, nobody great wanted to play here when the choices were bigger.
So, with a management incapable of bringing in superstars, the Bulls should immediately get rid of the players who won’t be around when they threaten to win again. That starts with Boozer and should include Deng.
Some would call it tanking a season for a better draft spot. Others would commend it as the next, smart step toward building a championship contender.
Clearing out and starting over looks like the best answer for the Bulls in today’s NBA. Treading water, trying to finish a couple games over .500, squeaking into the playoffs with a team past its championship window is a self-inflicted wound. It’s championship death. Hopeless.
If you can’t buy a title the way Miami did, then you have to stink and then draft your way to the finals the way Oklahoma City did.
The Bulls appear to be trying to be the next Atlanta Hawks, and how has that worked out for the Atlanta Hawks?
I’ll hang up and listen for the hummena-hummena-hummena.
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