After replacing Fred Hoiberg with Jim Boylen as their head coach, the Chicago Bulls have been trying to unload some of their veterans to focus on the development of their young players in the 2018-19 NBA season. As of now, Jabari Parker emerged as the top trade candidate in Chicago, and there are speculations that the Bulls will also consider moving veteran center Robin Lopez before the February NBA trade deadline.
However, finding a trade partner for Robin Lopez won't be easy as most people think. Aside from his age and deteriorating performance, Lopez is currently earning $14.5 million this season. If the Bulls buy out Lopez's contract, the reigning NBA champions, Golden State Warriors, may consider adding him to their roster, according to Marc Stein of New York Times.
"There will be little need for the Bulls to keep Lopez, 30, beyond Feb. 7 if they don't find a workable trade for him, which may set up the former Knick to emerge as one of most coveted buyout candidates. Golden State's positional needs also could certainly change between now and then, but Kevon Looney is the closest thing to a proven center currently available to Coach Steve Kerr."After winning back-to-back NBA championship titles, the Warriors didn't only retain their core of Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Kevin Durant, and Draymond Green, but they also managed to address one of the major problems on their roster with the acquisition of All-Star center DeMarcus Cousins in the recent free agency. Unfortunately, Cousins is yet to play a single game as a Warrior since he's still recovering from a torn Achilles he suffered last season. While waiting for DeMarcus Cousins to return, the Warriors could use Robin Lopez as their temporary starting center. Despite his age, Lopez can still be a dominant presence under the basket, giving the Warriors an incredible rebounder and rim protector. Once the Bulls let him become an unrestricted free agent, Lopez is likely to gain plenty of interest from the buyout market.
However, the Warriors will undeniably be a more appealing landing spot for Robin Lopez than other NBA teams. After spending 10 years of his NBA career with mediocre or rebuilding teams like the Phoenix Suns, New Orleans Pelicans, Portland Trail Blazers, New York Knicks, and the Chicago Bulls, Lopez will surely love to join a team where he has a higher chance of winning his first NBA championship title. Despite the improvements made by other powerhouse teams in the league, the Warriors remain as the heavy favorite to take home the Larry O'Brien Trophy in the 2018-19 NBA season.