NBA Draft: Let's Make a Deal! Chicago Bulls and Memphis Grizzlies

Tab BamfordSenior Writer IJune 23, 2009

CHICAGO - APRIL 30: Derrick Rose #1 of the Chicago Bulls drives against the Boston Celtics in Game Six of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2009 NBA Playoffs at the United Center on April 30, 2009 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bulls defeated the Celtics 128-127 in triple-overtime. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agreees that, by downloading and/or using this Photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

There's a team looking to potentially move up the draft.

There's another that nobody wants to work out for.

Let's make a deal!

Last year, the Chicago Bulls "won" the lottery and were awarded their local hero turned point guard for the next decade Derrick Rose. With Rose guiding the ship, the Bulls went from the draft lottery into a seven-game thriller in this year's playoffs against the defending champion Celtics.

Meanwhile, the Memphis Grizzlies are bad.

Last year, they lost out on Rose, but won their own stud in O.J. Mayo, someone they're now looking to build around.

The problem is, it appears none of this year's top prospects want to work out for the team with the second overall pick.

So what could happen?

Many rumors now have the Grizzlies looking one of two directions.

The first is Memphis selecting Spanish point guard Ricky Rubio, and there are huge pros and cons to this idea.

The cons are that some scouts feel he's another Jason (no "y" means no-jail Jason) Williams, while others think he could be another Jason Kidd. That's a big range. The other, and bigger, negative to this idea is that the Grizz already have a young point guard in Mike Conley.

The good behind this plan would be that Rubio is familiar with the team's center, Marc Gasol, from playing for Team Spain. He would also, unlike Conley, be under contract for the next few years because of his rookie deal.

That's the first idea.

The second would be to select Hasheem "I Disappear When I Turn Sideways" Thabeet.

Again, there's lots of good and bad with this idea. The bad starts with the team trading Pau Gasol for his brother, signifying a commitment to at least one Gasol at center. The other is that they drafted Darrell Arthur at the four to split time with Hakim Warrick last year.

The good is that Thabeet is a legit center who's tall and blocks shots.

But then there's always the possibility of a trade.

Chicago has some issues to deal with this summer. Ben Gordon, a mix of The Microwave and Mighty Mouse, is an unrestricted free agent, and the team needs a legit post presence.

The Bulls have two picks in this year's draft, at No. 16 and No. 26 overall. There have been lots of rumors that the Bulls are trying to move up in the draft by moving both picks for one, higher selection.

So what do we do with these two teams?

Well, if Memphis isn't sold on Conley and need a point guard under contract, the Bulls have an answer in captain Kirk Hinrich.

If Memphis is scared that Rudy Gay is going to leave next summer as a free agent, the Bulls could answer that with Luol Deng. He's locked up for the next few years.

And by having two picks, the Grizzlies could add talent and depth to a team that is roughly six players deep right now.

So let's say the Bulls offer Memphis their two picks, Hinrich and Deng for Warrick and the second overall pick.

The Bulls get a high-flying power forward in Warrick to complement Tyrus Thomas in a running offense led by Rose.

The Grizzlies get two veterans with playoff expereince that are under contract for the next few years, and two picks with which to add depth to their roster.

Sound good?

But what would the Bulls want the second overall pick for?

How about adding another Memphis guard to the Chicago mix? Tyreke Evans is big, at over 6'6" tall. He played the point, like Rose, for John Calipari at Memphis, but projects more as a two guard as a pro.

Putting Evans' size and handling ability next to Rose with Thomas, Warrick and Joakim Noah could pose a formidable, young team that could grow up together to become what the Phoenix Suns had tried to be in the earlier part of this decade.

Warrick and Thomas are premier shot blockers at the four, and Noah matured a ton in the playoffs. With Brad Miller under contract for another year, and John Salmons able to play the three, the Bulls would have a nice young nucleus.

Meanwhile, Memphis would avoid the stigma of blowing a pick if they're not sold on either Thabeet or Rubio, and could still get players to help a roster that would have added depth moving into next season. A starting lineup of Hinrich, Mayo, Gay, Arthur and Gasol isn't too bad, with Deng coming off the bench next to Conley.

Just a let's make a deal!


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