I'm not going to go full-bore on this story yet, because nothing has been 100 percent confirmed, but it looks like the much-rumored Bulls deal for a big man could net us not Amare or Chris Bosh, but 32-year-old NBA&id=586">Brad Miller.
You might remember Miller from when the Bulls drafted and dumped him back in the late 90's, or from when he flopped with the Olympic team.
I'm not biased because he went to Purdue; I can admit that Miller has been a multi-talented center throughout his career. But the rumors have us giving up Noce, Gooden's expiring contract, and Ced Simmons to get Miller and John Salmons from Sacramento.
Does this help or hurt the Bulls? Analysis will follow confirmation of the trade actually happening. But let me just say that a 32-year-old seven footer isn't exactly the building block for which I was secretly hoping.
I went on NBA.com and was looking at player comparisons for Gooden vs. Miller and Salmons (a 6'7" G/F) vs. Noce. The main stat that jumped out at me, first off, was Salmons' scoring average.
This year (albeit on an awful Kings team), he's playing over 37 minutes a game and averaging 18.4 points. Noce is only averaging ten. Their rebounds are identical, while Salmons gets more assists and shoots a better percentage from both two- and three-point range. Actually, this new Bull shoots over 41 percent from deep.
The seven-foot Miller is also known for his range—he's connecting at a 46.5 percent clip on 20-of-45 shooting for the season.
Though he has scored less than Gooden on the year, the two do have something in common: their injury history. Miller has missed the last six with a bad hip, while Drew has missed the last several with a strained groin. Both have also had abdominal muscle problems this year.
But after some consideration, I'm (hesitantly) putting this down as a win for the Bulls. When this team has been good in past seasons, it has been on the back of good three-point shooting from guys like Hinrich and Ben Gordon, and this trade adds two more guys that can provide that instant offense.
But as with any trade, it is very important to keep in mind that success or failure really depends on how team chemistry works out. Losing Andres Nocioni, who has been a Bull since his rookie year, as well as Gooden, who was a captain this season, will certainly affect this locker room.
My biggest question is whether Miller and Salmons, coming from a pretty bad Sacramento Kings team, will be able to become positive locker room influences during a potential playoff race. After all, the Bulls are only a few games out of the eighth spot.
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