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Bulls Trade Rumors: Multiple Teams 'Prepared to Make Offers' for Alex Caruso

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIDecember 22, 2022

Chicago Bulls guard Alex Caruso (6) handles the ball against Minnesota Timberwolves guard Jaylen Nowell (4) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Sunday, Dec. 18, 2022, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Stacy Bengs)
AP Photo/Stacy Bengs

Multiple NBA teams reportedly are prepared to make trade offers for Chicago Bulls guard Alex Caruso if the team decides to make him available.

Sean Deveney of Heavy Sports spoke to an Eastern Conference general manager on the matter.

"The guy to watch is [Alex] Caruso," the GM said in part. "They have had talks about Coby White but he is going into free agency, and if you trade for him, you've got to pay him. No one is ready to take that leap with him. But Caruso has a contract that teams like (two years, $19 million after this season) and he is a good piece on a winning team. If we get into mid-January and they have not turned it around, look for a team that sees itself as a contender to make a run for him because he is really only an asset playing a role on a good team."

The GM also said that Caruso has "good trade value" and would have roughly
"15 interested teams if he were up to be dealt."

Caruso is a six-year NBA veteran who spent the first four years of his career with the Los Angeles Lakers before joining the Bulls on a four-year, $36,980,000 contract. He is averaging 5.3 points on 42.9 percent shooting, 3.8 assists and 1.6 steals per game.

The 12-18 Bulls are floundering and sit 12th in the Eastern Conference. They lost seven of nine games before beating the Miami Heat on Tuesday.

There are murmurs of unrest, with multiple reporters noting a halftime blowup during a 150-126 loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves.

K.C. Johnson @KCJHoop

Can confirm <a href="https://twitter.com/JCowleyHoops?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@JCowleyHoops</a> Tweet that players had strong exchange at halftime of Timberwolves loss, which drew coaches' attention. Sources said multiple teammates directed frustration at Zach LaVine, and the situation intensified.

Shams Charania and Darnell Mayberry of The Athletic also reported that the team is trying to work through "an on-court disconnect" between LaVine and DeMar DeRozan.

Eric Pincus of Bleacher Report also noted some potential developments.

"The dysfunction remains, and teams are looking closely at the Bulls as a potential seller ahead of the February 9 trade deadline," Pincus wrote. "While some think DeMar DeRozan or Nikola Vučević could become available, recent events raise the possibility that LaVine may want out."

Ultimately, the Bulls' season isn't dead by any means despite the difficult start. They are only a half-game behind the Toronto Raptors for the final spot in the Eastern Conference play-in tournament field.

But the Bulls could find themselves in a precarious situation with continued losing into the winter before the Feb. 9 trade deadline. It remains to be seen whether they will be sellers, but Caruso would be a valued addition to any team.