Marc Stein @ESPNSteinLine
Just going online now: ESPN sources say Bulls in talks to sign Louis Amundson. Decision on veteran power forward expected Friday2013-3-1 04:48:03
Though there is no word on negotiations or how close the two sides are, this move seems in line with Chicago's season-long plan. The Bulls held firm at the NBA trade deadline and were holding onto a roster spot in hopes of finding a player who fits their needs.
Amundson, who last played for the Minnesota Timberwolves this season, may be that guy. He averaged 1.6 points and 2.4 rebounds while playing in just 20 of the Timberwolves' first 46 games before being released in early February. His time in Minnesota was marred by intermittent playing time, as Amundson fell deep down Rick Adelman's rotation and never carved himself a niche.
While Amundson's stay in Minnesota was a worst-case scenario result, he has been a widely respected energy guy throughout his career. He excelled during his time with the Phoenix Suns in their uptempo system, developing chemistry in pick-and-roll situations with Steve Nash.
The Bulls, who took some heat for their lack of deadline movement, may be hoping Amundson finds lightning in a bottle with Derrick Rose. The former NBA MVP has yet to set a concrete return date and has even been non-committal about playing this season whatsoever, but recent pregame dunk routines have gotten plenty of hopes up in the Windy City.
Amundson certainly isn't the type of player who is going to expedite that process. He's a replacement-level big man who will try hard on the defensive end and meshes with point guards who like high screens (though that did not happen with Minnesota).
But with the Bulls gearing themselves up for a playoff run, any improvement has to be seen as a positive sign. Amundson won't swing the championship paradigm, but he may shock fans with his ability to acclimate if this report comes to fruition.