Chicago Bulls Still Have An Ace Up Their Sleeve

Michael Jordan at the United Center

Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

It has been an awful season for the Chicago Bulls. Everything that could go wrong has gone wrong in 2013 as superstar Derrick Rose is still on the sideline with no date scheduled for his return. While Bulls fans continue to wait for Rose to comeback, the fan base has something else to look forward to.

Chicago made a draft-day trade back in 2006 as they drafted LaMarcus Aldridge with the second overall pick, but traded him to the Portland Trail Blazers in exchange for fellow rookie Tyrus Thomas minutes later. The Bulls dropped the ball in this deal as Aldridge is a two-time All-Star averaging 18.3 points per game over his seven-year career. On the other hand, Thomas lasted just three and half years with the Bulls which were marred with mediocrity and controversy.

However, it would be the trade that sent Thomas out of town that put the Bulls ahead of the eight-ball. Thomas would be dealt to the Charlotte Bobcats for a protected first-round pick. It has been nearly four years and the Bulls still have not received that pick due to the protection restrictions.

For those of you wondering when the Bulls will get that pick: here are the details.

In order for the Bulls to get the first round pick in 2013 the Bobcats would have to be awarded worse than the 12th pick. Currently, the Bobcats are in line for the first overall pick. 2014 could be the year to get the pick, but only if the Bobcats earn a pick above 10. 2015 is the last year that the pick is protected as it has to be under five in order for the Bobcats to keep the pick. That leaves the Bobcats 2016 first-round draft pick in the hands of the Bulls, no matter what the pick winds up to be.

Michael Jordan and the Bobcats are in extremely bad shape and if they continue to be in the cellar of the NBA, Chicago could have the first overall pick in 2016. This is something to keep an eye on if you are a fan of the Bulls, Bobcats and the NBA in general as this pick could change the landscape of the league.

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