Chicago Bulls trade rumors have included some pretty big names during the 2016-17 NBA season. Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Love, DeMarcus Cousins, and Hassan Whiteside are just some of the players who have been linked to the Bulls. Then there are the NBA trade rumors about the Bulls looking to deal players like Jimmy Butler, Dwyane Wade, Rajon Rondo, and Taj Gibson. The February 23 NBA trade deadline is just two weeks away and still, the team is running in place.
Despite all the noise, the latest NBA standings have the Bulls as the No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference. The team is at 26-27 overall and on a pace to easily make the postseason. If the NBA Playoffs started today (Feb. 10), the Bulls would have a first-round series against the Boston Celtics. Meanwhile, the Detroit Pistons (25-28) are just one game back and trying to get out of the eighth seed. The team that finishes in eighth place has to play a first-round series against the Cleveland Cavaliers.
There are going to continue to be new Chicago Bulls trade rumors, right up until that deadline hits in February. It doesn’t mean that the front office is going to take any action, though, as inactivity has become the norm. As previously reported by the Inquisitr, the team is in a difficult position, caught between trying to qualify for the NBA Playoffs and going into a complete rebuild. There were even NBA rumors about a fire sale taking place. As of yet, the front office still hasn’t indicated which way the franchise will go next.
There are a lot of reasons for Bulls fans to hold out hope for a postseason upset. Through the first few matchups of this NBA season, the Bulls lead the season series over the Cleveland Cavaliers 2-0 and are tied with the Boston Celtics at 1-1. That’s a good sign, as those are the two most likely first-round matchups for the Bulls. There is a game on February 16 against the Celtics and one on February 25 against the Cavs that should really showcase where the Bulls stand this season.
The additional good news for the Bulls is that the team has been a bit banged up this season, allowing for most of the star players to gain some needed rest midseason. While this wouldn’t be the preferred way to take a few games off, it might just allow Jimmy Butler, Dwyane Wade, and Rajon Rondo to be fresh for the NBA Playoffs. Meanwhile, there have been continuous NBA rumors about how LeBron James and the other stars for the Cavs are playing too many regular season minutes.
The crux of these Chicago Bulls trade rumors come from the pending free agencies of some key players. Dwyane Wade has a player option for next season, giving him the ability to opt out of his deal during the NBA offseason. Big man Taj Gibson is also playing in the final year of his deal, with the likelihood very high that he will command a big raise in free agency. Dealing either player before the NBA trade deadline would make sense if the front office is really ready to start a rebuilding process.
At the end of the day, the Bulls don’t need to actually make a deal before the NBA trade deadline, giving the front office the option to see how the season plays out. While there are a lot of teams that would like to steal All-Star Jimmy Butler away from the franchise, he is locked into a long-term contract that gives the Bulls complete control. Even if the Bulls lost Gibson and Wade in the offseason, the team might just have a playoff-capable core. There is no reason to believe that the Chicago Bulls trade rumors will quiet down, but fans should not be surprised if the phones are quiet at the deadline.
[Featured Image by Tim Warner/Getty Images]