Otto Porter Jr. Rumors: Execs Think Contract Buyout Is Possible; Warriors Linked

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistMarch 8, 2021

Chicago Bulls forward Otto Porter Jr. (22) during an NBA basketball game against the Oklahoma City Thunder, Friday, Jan. 15, 2021, in Oklahoma City. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Sue Ogrocki/Associated Press

Otto Porter Jr. has been out since the start of February with back issues, and he might have played his last game with the Chicago Bulls.

According to Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer, teams are keeping an eye on the forward, and "executives believe a buyout could occur."

The Golden State Warriors are reportedly among those interested in the 27-year-old, who is set to hit free agency in the offseason.

Golden State (19-18) could be seeking another perimeter option alongside Kelly Oubre Jr. and Andrew Wiggins. Stephen Curry remains one of the top scorers in the NBA, but depth has been an issue this season.

It will be difficult for any team to project much from Porter, who has been a major disappointment since joining the Bulls in a midseason trade in 2018-19.Β The 27-year-old has appeared in only 45 games for Chicago across three seasons, including 14 last year and 16 this season.

However, Porter can still be an impact player when healthy. He's averaging 11.6 points and 6.3 rebounds per game this year while shooting 40 percent from three-point range.

The former Washington Wizards forward was one of the most versatile players in the game at his best, ranking in the top 30 in the NBA in win shares in bothΒ 2016-17Β andΒ 2017-18. The 40.4 career three-point percentage would be especially useful for any contender.

In the meantime, he is only wasting roster space for a Bulls team looking to get more playing time for its young core. A buyout would ensure more minutes for rookie Patrick Williams and others as the season progresses.