Written by Darin Ford | 08 July 2012

According to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune, former Bull, Kirk Hinrich, has agreed in principle to a contract with the Bulls:

I don't have much to really analyze here. It's an iffy move for us. Hinrich averaged double figures in points overall in the seven years he spent here before being traded to the Wizards. Kirk, 31, averaged under 7 points a game last year for the Atlanta Hawks. 

Kirk chose the Bulls over the Bucks who reportedly were close to nailing the veteran guard.

Hinrich can really guard and shoot. He's also a leader who will provide consistency in the Bulls backcourt without D-Rose. Essentially, Kirk was traded from the Bulls to rebuild the team and get new blood on the roster after the early season struggles during the '09-'10 session. Hinrich hasn't played for coach Thibodeau yet, but is expected to fit well due to Thibs' defensive principles. As indicated a big reason that Kirk will be brought to the squad revolves around the mentoring of Marquis Teague. 

The move by the Bulls clearly hints towards the dismissal of C.J. Watson and Ronnie Brewer could follow suit.

Now the Bulls will most likely turn to the remaining big-men in F/A and pick-up a replacement for Omer Asik.

To see a stupid and distasteful photo, click here.

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Written by Darin Ford | 07 July 2012

Brace yourself ...

All of the LeBron haters have to find new meat, eh? Ha ... we'll show 'em.

Comment your thoughts, feelings and reactions to this photo via Twitter or LiveFyre!

(H/T to our partner, Chicago Bulls Fan Talk, for bringing this to our attention.)

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Written by Darin Ford | 07 July 2012

I was watching TMZ late last night and saw a clip of Derrick Rose limping outside of a Nightclub in California. (The California part is what was reported.) TMZ then went on a crazy rant included some "Goodwill Hunting" kind of stuff that had a guy writing all over the walls in yellow marker. No, it wasn't Matt Damon. It just reminded me of it.

Rose obviously isn't even close to 50 percent healthy if he's limping while walking. Coach Tom Thibodeau says that Rose's recovery is coming along well and he's been very hardworking and diligent.

Watch the vid:

Jerryd Bayless and Michael Redd on F/A watch? Click here for that.

Bulls off-season review ... so far: http://www.hornstothehardwood.com/2012-articles/july/analyzing-bulls-off-season-so-far.html

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Written by Darin Ford | 07 July 2012

According to Blog-a-Bull along with many other sites and Twitter accounts, the Bulls are looking at free agents Jerryd Bayless and Michael Redd.

Bayless spent last season with the Raptors and was Jose Calderon's back-up for the most part. Whereas Michael Redd was still productive coming off the bench for the Suns.

Bayless had an impressive 11.4 points per game in '11-'12. Another big-time stat that Jarryd bared was a PER of 17.8 (second overall on the team, .2 behind sharpshooting PF Andrea Bargnani). Bayless is a 6'3" combo guard that can score. He's played along guys like Chris Paul and Brandon Roy early in his career so playing with Derrick Rose wouldn't be a big change of pace. With the drafting of Marquis Teague though, I'm not to sure if I like this fit. Teague is good enough to start this year. Yeah, he (Bayless) is young -- at only 23-years-old and going into his fifth year in the league -- his ceiling is still high. But, the 6'2" Teague is younger with a high potential, I say they go with Teague.

As for Redd ... we all know about him. Late-second round draft pick turned into NBA All-Star and USA Basketball Olympic Teamer. Redd came out of college know as a big-time defensive guy, not a lights out shooter. He transformed his shooting ability going into the second year of his NBA career. Redd is still a great shooter but what seems to be an endless amount of knee injuries and not being in-shape have taken some years away from his game. Michael, 32 almost 33, finally found his niche in Phoenix and looked comfortable playing again. He was a big part of the mid-season revival for a team that fought and clawed for the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference but fell short. Redd makes more sense because he's bigger than Bayless, a better shooter, a Midwest guy and more importantly he can help fill the void possibly to be left by Ronnie Brewer, Kyle Korver and (iffy) Luol Deng.

Chances on either of them ending up with the Bulls are low. That doesn't mean they wouldn't help though. Both will find jobs somewhere, especially Bayless due to his younger age and potential. Redd will most likely look to join a contender. Celtics?

We'll keep you updated on everything Bulls free agency, keep checking back here!

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Written by Darin Ford | 06 July 2012

We reported a few days ago about the possibility of Derek Fisher joining the Bulls.

SI.com's new services now say that Fisher has come up with five destinations that fit. The teams are Brooklyn, Dallas, Cleveland, OKC and Chicago in no particular order.

All of the situations make sense for Fisher.

Brooklyn because of D-Will and to be apart of their current Big Two (even though the Nets are pulling for a Big Three). Dallas due to Dirk. Cleveland to mentor their young guards Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters. Not to mention that a younger team like the Cavs would benefit from the leadership that Fisher would provide. OKC obviously makes sense, he loves it there ... wouldn't be surprised if he switches over to #38.

If he came to Chicago, it would be to mentor Marquis Teague, provide steady contribution off the bench and cast an even bigger winning presence than what's already been there. Another positive point to signing with the Bulls would give him a title contender to play for.

The Thunder are the the only other team outside of us -- the Bulls -- expected to push for a title in 2013. The Mavs are probably going to struggle, the Cavs are young and Brooklyn is a new commodity not yet fused together.

Fisher has won five NBA titles in his soon-to-be seventeen year career. I'm sure he wouldn't mind grabbing a sixth.

To read about the Bulls' off-season so far, click this link.

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Written by Darin Ford | 06 July 2012

Our beloved Bulls haven't had the most successful off-season, per say.

An off-season that's only highlight so far has been the drafting of Marquis Teague. Now don't get me wrong, Teague is a good player and could have a potentially huge impact for the 2012-2013 Bulls. But, the Bulls needed more to go along with Derrick Rose -- something we obviously all saw in this years first round of the playoffs. We weren't nearly as good without Rose (as most teams wouldn't). It was clear that GM Gar Forman needed to acquire a big asset during the free agent frenzy via trade or persuading a player to sign outright.

I'm not here to rant on Forman either, not at all. We've fallen short, period.

Brandon Roy ... miss, going to Minnesota. Derek Fisher ... reportedly favoring Brooklyn, OKC and Dallas even more than Chi-town. We're still waiting on Captain Kirk. Willie Green??? What? Houston's Courtney Lee has been contacted, but, he has a lot of organizations knocking at his door. Oh yeah! Speaking of Houston ... remember them? Of course you do ... they signed center Omer Asik to a backloaded deal (eh-hmm, cough-cough ... the dude will make $15 million in his third and final year under contract) with an offer sheet that we probably can't afford to match, really.

Looks like a bunch of negative stuff up above.

What about Philadelphia's Lou Williams? Grizzly bear O.J. Mayo? Everyone is leaving Dallas -- and avoiding it -- why can't Delonte West? Felton? Sessions?

There are plenty of players out there that the Bulls can look into since the first crop I mentioned don't seem to favorable. (Hinrich has highest probability.) In correspondence to the names of Williams, Mayo and West among others, there is a slew of centers for the picking. None of them outside of Chris Kaman are All-Star capable. Unfortunately, Kaman, will probably demand more money than the likes of Sixers re-sign Spencer Hawes and our -- at the moment -- Asik. Both signed deals worth $13.1 million over two-years and $25.1 million over three-years respectively.

The Bulls need to add. So far, there's just been subtraction. With Derrick Rose probably missing at least 60 to 75 percent of the upcoming season, Deng possibly requiring wrist surgery -- however, that now seems to be a non-issue, Asik bolting for HOU, Aging Rip Hamilton, Boozer trade and amnesty rumors rolling through everyday, Watson and Brewer could be waived within the next four days, Noah's ankle ... there's just so much to go on and on about.

Needless to say, this is a tough time.

As a coach's kid, I've been taught that when "stuff" gets tough, you have to persevere, learn and improve. This is the perfect speed bump for the Bulls if you ask me.

Everyone remembers the famous day in the Windy City when the gallant 1.7% "Rose" above all and secured the No. 1 overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft. Looking back, that was obviously meant to be. We were gifted the pick. Things were lined up. Big things were coming, and we all knew that, the whole NBA knew it.

Call me crazy but I genuinely believe that everything happens for a reason. This is the time that the Bulls can earn their stripes. Without Rose, holes pegged through the roster, an improving Eastern Conference as well as a better NBA all together, the Bulls must stay a contender through hard work with what they have and pray that some help can be reeled in.

Today is Day 6 in free agency. No max-contract guys are available, but that doesn't mean that they're aren't plenty of solid pieces that the Bulls can't go after.

No doubt in my mind that Brandon Roy would be the ultimate prize in free agency for the Bulls despite Hinrich being reportedly tagged as the main target. But, that's just it, we have to keep going.

Yes, we haven't had a great off-season, but it will turn, I promise.

Don't worry Bulls fans, don't worry. But hey ... at least we aren't the Mavs ... sorry Mark.

Click here to listen to Coach Thibs talk about everything Bulls.

A cheap replacement for Asik can be found here.

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Written by Darin Ford | 05 July 2012

Click below to view a video of head coach Tom Thibodeau sitting down with CSNChicago for an interview:

Luol Deng is a star, click here.

Omer Asik dark horse replacement, click here.

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Written by Darin Ford | 05 July 2012

Luol a star? I think so ...

As I was sifting through ESPN this morning along with other basketball and sporting sites as I usually do, I came across an interesting headline.

In ESPN's featured sidebar to the right of the big slider on the website's NBA section, there was a headline showcasing our very own, Luol Deng. In that headline link, Deng is pegged as a "NBA star." Something I'm quite comfortable with.

The headline read: 'Deng Only NBA Star On British Team For London' and can be read here

London natives Ben Gordon and Byron Mullens (both play for the Charlotte Bobcats) won't be playing alongside Luol in the upcoming games. The only other NBA caliber player is Pops Mensah-Bonsu. Pops was a star in the States during his college days. PMB was a stellar power forward in the Atlantic 10 conference playing for George Washington University.

Deng says that he plans to make Britain proud of their country's basketball team.

To see why Joakim Noah won't be playing in the Olympics, click here.

To checkout a few of the official released names on the Bulls Summer League team, click here.

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Written by Darin Ford | 04 July 2012

According to sources Bulls center, Joakim Noah, will not play for the French Olympic team in this years games.

Noah said, "“I’m absolutely not ready, not ready to run, not ready to jump. And even less to play. I need more time and work. I’m not in form for someone who wants to compete in the Olympics. And given the problems that I have with my ankles, not going to the Games seemed to be the most reasonable decision.”

Joakim is obviously opting out due to the nagging ankle injury he suffered in the playoffs back in May.

This means that two of the main guys on the Bulls roster, Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah, won't be playing for their countries in the Olympics. Meanwhile, Luol Deng is reportedly really looking forward to being apart of the host team, Great Britain.

We'll cover the happenings for Olympic basketball regarding Team GB and Luol.

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Written by Darin Ford | 04 July 2012

Sources confirmed to CSNChicago at least six players that are for sures on the Bulls Summer League Team that will play in Las Vegas, Nevada, from July 13 to July 22.

The squad will be headed by Marquis Teague, our first round draft pick who was introduced yesterday, and Leon Powe. Powe, 28, won a championship back in 2008 with the Boston Celtics in the first year of The Boston Three Party.

Outside of those two, the roster is toppled with role players that will accommodate Teague and Powe nicely. Guards Jermaine Taylor and Demetri McCamey will fit well alongside Marquis. All of them can score -- especially Taylor -- and are good athletes. McCamey went undrafted in 2011 after four solid years playing for Bruce Weber and the Fighting Illini.

Summer League's are all about chance and opportunity. There's no doubt in my mind that both Olek Czyz, former Nevada hybrid 4-man, and Jamie Skeen, someone that was a pivotal part of VCU's run to the Final Four in 2011, will use the opportunity to its max potential. Both have good size and can shoot from the perimeter well despite their position. Ironically enough, Czyz and Skeen both started their collegiate careers at ACC schools, Duke and Wake Forest respectively. They each ended up being huge parts of their teams at the mid-major level and saw success.

There hasn't been any strong notifications coming from the Bulls regarding who else they'll add to the roster. In a round-about-way, rumors of second year swingman Jimmy Butler and former champion Brian "The White Mamba" Scalabrine joining the team have been circulating. Sure, Butler makes sense but not too, too positive on whether or not Scal fits. But then again, it's him ... he's awesome. He'll probably be put there to fill a leadership role, size and be a reserve big with energy.

We'll cover the broadcasted Summer League games for the Bulls here on HttH.

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