The Chicago Bulls were the first team who got to make their pitch to highly coveted free agent Carmelo Anthony on Tuesday and they pulled out all the stops. Several of the things that took place earlier today hint toward the Bulls’ interest in Anthony, his interest in the team, and the Bulls’ plans for the roster should he sign. All of the following events that took place earlier are helping to create a clearer picture of where Anthony and the Bulls stand.
The Bulls had graphic of Anthony in team uniform at United Center.
This clearly showed the interest the Bulls have in Anthony. Obviously they’re interested, but by pulling this off, they showed that they’re all in for him. For a team that can give him the best chance to win, it’s rare they’re letting on that much about their interest.
Taj Gibson was present at meetings.
This leads one to believe just how the financials were discussed today. Both the Bulls and Anthony want the team to retain Gibson if he is to sign with the team, so it’s interesting that he was there. What this could mean is that Gibson was discussing taking a potential pay cut via a restructured deal in order to clear space for Anthony and allow himself to stay in Chicago. Keeping Gibson is absolutely essential in landing Anthony.
Derrick Rose helped with the team’s pitch.
Although he adamantly and publicly claiming he would never recruit free agents to the Bulls, that’s exactly what he did today. Even Rose, who has been stubborn on the point for years, sees what a great opportunity the Bulls have here. If they can land Anthony while retaining Gibson, they would jump the Miami Heat as the favorites in the Eastern Conference.
We won’t know what this all means until after Anthony has also met with the other teams on his short list, but if the Bulls don’t land him, it surely wasn’t for a lack of trying. They threw the kitchen sink at Anthony and now it’s up to him where he wants to play in the 2014-15 season and beyond.