If you were one of the fans hoping that the Chicago Bulls would trade for guard Russell Westbrook, well we have some bad news for you.
Bulls vice president of basketball operations John Paxson put any hope of that coming true to rest on Thursday morning while making an appearance on Chicago radio station 670 The Score. Here is what he said when asked about adding a star player to the roster this season:
“Everybody pays attention obviously to what’s going on, what the deals around the league are,” Paxson said. “But I think every team is at kind of a different stage of development and evolution. There are teams that are going to take a real shot at someone like that. You have to factor in everything. When you look at the financial aspect of a player that’s 30 going out four years and the amount of money that’s going to be made, those things can tie your hands up and put your organization in a tough position.”
After Oklahoma City reached an agreement to send Paul George to the Los Angeles Clippers, rumors swirled about the team moving the former MVP Westbrook as well. He signed a $205M max extension in 2017 and still has four years and $170M left on it.
That’s a lot of money to be giving a player who will turn 31 in November.
However, the thought of adding an eight-time All-Star and former MVP sounded like a good one to some Bulls fans as it likely wouldn’t force them to pay a steep price. Chicago could keep their core together and still land Westbrook, taking on most of his salary instead of parting ways with a player like Lauri Markkanen.
But for now, Paxson and the Bulls don’t appear to be in the running.