Bulls Rumors: Chicago Should Lower Demands in Potential Dion Waiters Trade

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistDecember 19, 2013

Dec 17, 2013; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers shooting guard Dion Waiters (3) reacts after scoring a basket in the fourth quarter against the Portland Trail Blazers at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

If the Chicago Bulls want Dion Waiters, they'll have to be more accommodating to the Cleveland Cavaliers' needs.

Back in November, ESPN's Chris Broussard reported that the Bulls were a possible destination for the disgruntled shooting guard.

Waiters has gone on record saying that he isn't angling for a move away from the Cavaliers, as per Mary Schmitt Boyer of The Cleveland Plain Dealer:

I was sleeping. I wake up. … It's crazy when you wake up and you see all this stuff. At the end of the day, I know what I said, what I didn't say. That's one of the things I absolutely never said. It is what it is, man. They can keep talking. I know I didn't say it.

Bleacher Report's Jared Zwerling reported earlier in the week that it was down to Chicago and the Philadelphia 76ers in the Waiters sweepstakes. However, he added that Cleveland was unlikely to surrender both Waiters and first-round draft picks in order to get Luol Deng in return.

And who can blame them?

Since The Decision, the Cavaliers have made a concerted effort to build through the draft. Although Chris Grant hasn't done a great job with all of those picks, Cleveland has at least supplied him with first-rounder after first-rounder. The franchise knew from the beginning that was the best way to rebuild, rather than splurging on one above-average player in free agency.

INDEPENDENCE, OH - APRIL 24:  Mike Brown of the Cleveland Cavaliers is introduced as the new head coach alongside majority owner Dan Gilbert and general manager Chris Grant at The Cleveland Clinic Courts on April 24, 2013 in Independence, Ohio in Clevelan
David Liam Kyle/Getty Images

Even in the chance that Dan Gilbert demands Grant make some moves to help the team in the present, it's unlikely the long term will be sacrificed to the extent of losing multiple first-rounders.

Should the Bulls want to push this through, they're much better off demanding another player instead of picks. Anderson Varejao wouldn't be a bad piece to get in return, and Cleveland would probably be willing to part with the 31-year-old.

Maybe a three-team deal could be worked out, with the end result being Deng in Cleveland and Waiters in Chicago.

Either way, the Bulls should try to ensure that result happens.

Waiters is in the high-risk, high-reward mold. You see the flashes of the player he can be, but those are in between all of the other times when he's a liability at the defensive end and an inefficient scorer.

Per Zwerling:

But one NBA scout sees a bit too much of New York Knicks shooting guard J.R. Smith in Waiters' game, saying he's usually not the best player on the court and sometimes can be too focused on dominating the ball. The scout also questioned his tendency to be overweight at times.

"You can't have his mentality and not be the No. 1 option on a team. It's like J.R.," the scout said. "That's just not going to win you games—if you're the sixth-most talented guy on the team, but need the ball in your hands in order to play your game."

You can see it working out with Waiters and the Bulls, though.

Tom Thibodeau won't stand for any of Waiters' antics and me-first play. He'll cut that out real quick and instill some discipline in the second-year guard.

Playing with Derrick Rose would also likely help Waiters' game more than playing with Kyrie Irving has. Although D-Rose is unquestionably Chicago's first scoring option, he's willing to play more of a facilitator role than Irving, which would involve Waiters in the offense.

PORTLAND, OR - NOVEMBER 22:  Derrick Rose #1 of the Chicago Bulls during the game against the Portland Trail Blazers on November 22, 2013 at the Moda Center Arena in Portland, Oregon. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloadi
Cameron Browne/Getty Images

There's also the aspect of playing for a franchise like the Bulls. Being in a winning atmosphere can do wonders for a player's maturity level.

Waiters is unquestionably a player Chicago should be targeting. In order to make any deal happen, the team will have to meet Cleveland somewhere in the middle.