When free agency kicked off last week, the Chicago Bulls appeared to be in the driver’s seat to land free agent superstar Carmelo Anthony. But ever since then, the team appears to be losing ground in the Anthony sweepstakes.
To say that the Bulls are all-in to sign Anthony would be putting it lightly. Chicago has already announced that it will trade or amnesty Carlos Boozer in order to clear cap, and even traded All-Star Luol Deng back in January to put itself in a better position to sign Anthony this summer. Now, the Bulls are in a wait-and-see situation in hopes that Anthony turns down the New York Knicks and Los Angeles Lakers. But there’s really no point in waiting for Anthony to make a decision.
The Bulls already suffered this fate in the summer of 2000 by waiting on Tracy McGrady and Eddie Jones to make a decision. They suffered the same fate in 2010 waiting for LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh to make a decision. It’s time the Bulls stop being made a fool of in free agency. It would be more wise for the team to fill out the roster while their options are still plentiful.
Essentially, the Bulls would be better off wooing back Deng, bringing in Lance Stephenson and even securing the signing of the aging Pau Gasol. The team could also put more of an effort to ensure they sign European star Nikola Mirotic. Instead, they’re waiting for Anthony to make a decision when they could be adding more pieces to the team, and signing their own free agents such as D.J. Augustin or Kirk Hinrich. After all, the Orlando Magic gave seldom used Ben Gordon $9 million for two seasons, so it’s just a matter of time until another team throws money at fan favorite Augustin.
It would be great if the Bulls signed Anthony this summer. He’s easily one of the top players in the NBA, and would be one of the greatest free agents the Bulls have ever signed. But to continue to wait for him to make a decision is foolish. Anthony could even be waiting to team up with James on the Miami Heat, so it could be 2010 all over again if the Bulls aren’t careful.