Bulls News: Jabari Parker Has Thought About Playing for Jazz Amid Trade Rumors

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistJanuary 13, 2019

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - JANUARY 04:  Jabari Parker #2 of the Chicago Bulls walks across the court in the second quarter against the Indiana Pacers at the United Center on January 04, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
Dylan Buell/Getty Images

With his role on the Chicago Bulls significantly diminished and his future likely outside the Windy City, Jabari Parker has already envisioned suiting up for another team.

"Yeah, I have," Parker said Saturday when asked if he had thought about playing for the Utah Jazz, per the Deseret News' Mike Sorensen. "I already have a home here, and I visit here frequently."

Parker played 19 minutes in Saturday's 110-102 defeat to the Jazz. It was his first appearance for the Bulls since Jan. 4 and only his second game since Dec. 13.

The Athletic's Darnell Mayberry wrote Chicago may have viewed the occasion as a chance to give Utah a firsthand look at Parker: "I'm not big on conspiracies, but, man, this felt like the Bulls tried to show Utah what Parker can do. The trade deadline is just a little more than three weeks away, and Utah has long been rumored to have interest in Parker."

ESPN.com's Malika Andrews reported in mid-December the Bulls planned on dropping Parker from the rotation, and the Chicago Tribune's K.C. Johnson noted the team had "engaged in talks with several teams" about trading Parker.

According to Johnson, interested suitors are asking the Bulls to absorb big, multiyear contracts in return for the fifth-year forward.

While both Parker and the Bulls probably want to go in different directions, his deal will make it hard to piece together a trade. He's making $20 million this season and has a $20 million team option for 2019-20, per Spotrac.

Mayberry noted the Jazz in particular might be a difficult trade partner because of the finances. Utah is already $11.5 million over the salary cap, and the team traded Alec Burks ($11.3 million expiring contract) and two second-round draft picks to the Cleveland Cavaliers for Kyle Korver.

Because of those factors, the Jazz will have a hard time putting together salaries to equal the money Parker would add to their payroll.

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