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Pelicans Acquire Nikola Mirotic In Trade With Bulls

Pelicans Acquire Nikola Mirotic In Trade With Bulls

"It was hard. It was really hard for me", Mirotic said. Mirotic's Cleaning the Glass stats page shows the Chicago offense has consistently been more efficient and often much more efficient with Mirotic on the court.

With Mirotic playing the best basketball of his NBA career, Chicago was wise to capitalize on his all-time high trade value. Best of wishes to you in New Orleans, Nikola.

As part of a three-man frontcourt rotation, Monroe would help too. Johnson also said Allen and Nelson will be waived by the Bulls. The Pelicans also created a roster spot with this move, as the team now has space to try and sign forward Greg Monroe.

The news was immediately broken by ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, Shams Charania of The Vertical, and Marc Stein of The New York Times. He can be a free agent in the offseason, and there's nearly no chance Chicago would've exercised his club option. Assuming Cousins re-signs for his maximum salary or close to it, however, they will probably find themselves over the luxury-tax line.

The meaning for Mirotic is clear.

How could the Bulls think Mirotic would risk losing a guaranteed $12.5 million? The Pelicans had to strengthen somehow, and Mirotic was an easy trade target because of his availability. Fortunately, moving him to a team with cap space shouldn't be terribly hard for New Orleans if necessary. It doesn't solve long-term financial issues that may come back to hinder the Pelicans over the next few years, but shedding Asik's contract and getting something back of substance is an achievement on some level. The Pelicans will also get a second-round pick.

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The first round pick will have minimal protections. This will be the big man's second stint with Chicago; he played for them from 2010-2012, his first two seasons in the league.

My immediate reaction to this trade from the Bulls' standpoint was negative. On the season, they are 14-11 when he plays and 4-22 when he doesn't. If it conveys, the Pelicans will have picked in the first round just twice since 2013.

It's easier to establish the price of the Asik salary dump.

The Bulls had been looking to trade Mirotic, who missed Chicago's first 23 games after teammate Bobby Portis punched Mirotic in the face two days before the season-opener. Then again, the Bulls have lost five straight, will be worst in the short-term without Mirotic and are just three games behind the league-worst Hawks.

More importantly, so did the Bulls. Mirotic had blocked a similar version of the trade on Tuesday when they didn't guarantee picking up the option. After all, the past star of the team, Jimmy Butler was traded to the Timberwolves on draft night in order for the team to rebuild for the future. Once the team option was exercised, Mirotic no longer owned power to veto the deal.

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