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Report: Pau Gasol nearing three-year, $22 million deal with Bulls

Jul 14, 2014, 1:15 AM EDT

Pau Gasol, Ryan Kelley, Kevin Durant Pau Gasol, Ryan Kelley, Kevin Durant

This is a good deal for Chicago. They might easily have been paying much more for the same player.

However, after efforts to figure out a sign-and-trade seems to have fallen apart, the Bulls are going to just sign Pau Gasol as a free agent. Which means amnestying Carlos Boozer.

Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports has the details.

Free-agent forward Pau Gasol is finalizing a three-year, $22 million-plus contract with the Chicago Bulls, league sources told Yahoo Sports.

Gasol, 34, will hold a player option on the third year of the deal, sources told Yahoo Sports.

The contract details make clear Gasol’s desire to be part of a winning team again, because he turned down a two-year, $22 million contract to stay with the Los Angeles Lakers, sources said.

To make this deal (and to bring over Nikola Mirotic over) the Bulls are going to have to amnesty Carlos Boozer. Which has been expected. The Bulls and Lakers had talked about a sign-and-trade to make this deal work but nothing could be put together that satisfied both sides.

Chicago now has a stacked front line with Gasol and Joakim Noah likely starting and Taj Gibson and Mirotic coming off the bench. Mix in rookie Doug McDermott and you’ve got a lot of big men who can shoot now, which should help open up driving lanes for Derrick Rose.

A lot of Bulls fans had their sights set on Carmelo Anthony, who chose to stay in New York. Gasol is not as dynamic as ‘Melo offensively but this is still an good fit. The Lakers don’t have their last two rings without Gasol. He can serve well as the fulcrum of the offense from the elbow, plus he is still very skilled from the post. He’s a gifted passer and has a midrange jumper. His game slipped some the last year, part of that is him getting older but most of it was how he was misused by Mike D’Antoni in his system. Bottom line is he’s an upgrade in Chicago.

  1. wittenisgod - Jul 14, 2014 at 7:25 AM

    If mirotic comes too noah, Gibson , gasol and mirotic is flat out the best front line in the league

    • pudgalvin - Jul 14, 2014 at 7:50 AM

      Maybe. That’s a lot of money though, for a guy that hasn’t been terribly healthy and probably own’t be on the court finishing games for Thibs. I like it, but lets not get too carried away. I do like the pairing with Mirotic though.

      • pudgalvin - Jul 14, 2014 at 12:27 PM

        Really? You guys are nuts. 2 great defenders with good but limited offensive games, a 34 year old that may or may not still have anything left in the tank and a guy that has yet to set foot on an NBA court ( and who I’d venture to say not a single person here as actually seen more than 3 highlights of) you’re all ready to state emphatically that its the best front line in the league? Take it easy fellas.

  2. addict2sport - Jul 14, 2014 at 8:06 AM

    He was once a GREAT player but wait til he gets dumped by his girl or vertigo kicks in again. Forget physically, he’s been breaking down mentally for years now.

    • edavidberg - Jul 14, 2014 at 8:33 AM

      That’s true, but even last year his numbers were pretty solid. His PER was just under 20.

      • therealhtj - Jul 14, 2014 at 11:05 AM

        And out of the 60 games he played, they won 21. Anybody following that team closely knows the Pau Gasol Chicago’s getting isn’t the Pau Gasol who was as responsible as anyone for the Lakers Back-to-Back titles.

        This guy’s looked done since the 2011 playoffs and a change of scenery won’t turn back the clock.

      • sonnysuave - Jul 14, 2014 at 12:06 PM

        therealhtj… if you’ve followed that team closely… you’d know the Lakers winning 21 out of 60 w/ Pau playing, had more to do with D’antoni’s offense playing Pau out of position… ontop of the Lakers having no solid pieces.

      • bkbell3 - Jul 14, 2014 at 2:17 PM

        Career averages of 18-9, last year as the 3-12th option for no d’dummy he put up 17.4-9.7 but i think his shooting slipped a little due to being forced to play out past the top of the key and sometimes at the 3pt line. sigh

  3. edavidberg - Jul 14, 2014 at 8:40 AM

    Bulls have brought in some shooters this season in McDermott, Mirotic, and Gasol (the latter as a mid-range threat). This is a big upgrade over Boozer (under 40% from mid-range) and the other big men in the rotation last year.

    Add in Tony Snell potentially developing into a solid role player and the Bulls may finally have enough offense to be a legitimate threat in the NBA playoffs. They seem to be patterning themselves off of the Spurs team last year.

    With the Heat breaking up there is a real window for a lot of teams. Bulls have a chance to make it through that window.

  4. 88heatnation - Jul 14, 2014 at 8:53 AM

    That’s a bargain for a guy who averaged 17 and 9 last season, just felt like a second go to scorer next to Rose should have remained their priority and the Bulls should have done anything to get it with those high chances. Trade Dunleavy 8mil and a 2nd round pick for cap space to get Melo his max deal. I’d pefer a lineup of Rose, Butler, Melo, Gibson and Noah then taking title to the “best frontcourt” for years, it does not always transition to postseason success when you don’t have that go to option(s) to close games, just ask the Grizzlies.

    • sonnysuave - Jul 14, 2014 at 12:16 PM

      It would’ve taken alot more than Dunleavy & a 2nd rd pick to get space for Melo’s max. At the least, Gibson would’ve had to be a trade piece for Bulls to get Melo. And I’m sure this was one of the options presented to Melo… but championship contention drops if Gibson isn’t a part of the team. So it simply came down to winning or money… Melo chose money.

      • bkbell3 - Jul 14, 2014 at 2:22 PM

        If a guy like gibson{who is nice} is the difference in getting a chip, let alone melo you are in big trouble. And if melo came he would of been leaving upwards of 50mil on the table. Easy for you and me to say leave it, but that is huge generational money.

      • bkbell3 - Jul 14, 2014 at 2:25 PM

        And still no guarantee to get a chip and that’s if rose can stay healthy, another huge ?

  5. loyalraven - Jul 14, 2014 at 9:11 AM

    Didn’t the Lakers offer him 2 yrs 20 mill?

    • worldbfree4me - Jul 14, 2014 at 9:18 AM

      No Vets want to play with Kobe period!

      • asimonetti88 - Jul 14, 2014 at 11:04 AM

        Pau and Kobe are very close. That said, Pau wants to go to a team that will be competing for a championship this year. If Melo had decided to take a big paycut and leave the Knicks, Pau would still be in Forum Blue and Gold.

  6. ocgunslinger - Jul 14, 2014 at 9:33 AM

    Pau will be a valuable player and a key contributor for Chicago. I wish him well and thank him for some great play in Los Angeles.

  7. fnc111 - Jul 14, 2014 at 10:25 AM

    Bulls will be eliminated in the second round just like in ’13. That’s if Rose can get through the year which isn’t likely.

  8. 00maltliquor - Jul 14, 2014 at 11:21 AM

    Wow what a deal for Chicago!! That’s by far the best contract signed all offseason.

    • sonnysuave - Jul 14, 2014 at 12:23 PM

      I agree. $7mm/yr for a player of his caliber, bball IQ, and championship experience… is a bargain (compared to what some of these other overpaid unproven players are getting).

      • urodaddy07 - Jul 14, 2014 at 3:17 PM

        He is 34 years old guys

      • sportsfan18 - Jul 15, 2014 at 1:57 PM

        which means he’s YOUNGER than Kobe.

        also, Pau’s game is NOT based off of athleticism.

        Now, he’s nowhere as good as Tim Duncan, but he plays a similar style.

        Pau is not super fast, super strong and flying all around the court. he plays smart, like the Bigh Fundamental does.

        Pau’s game will age much better than those who rely solely on their athleticism.

        Nothing wrong with Pau’s game at 34 yrs old and especially for only $7 mill or so per yr.

  9. lakerade - Jul 14, 2014 at 12:27 PM

    Curious to see how forgiving Thibodeau is for the inevitable drop in defensive efficiency this coming season.

    • bkbell3 - Jul 14, 2014 at 2:33 PM

      People seem to think that the bulls are loaded with lock down defenders,boozer,dunleavy,korver,nate robinson,rose etc. stink one on one. Noah,gibson and butler are a little above average at best. The KEY is they have a great system of help defense and seem to be able to plug in almost anyone and keep that level up. Pau is long and smart so he should fit into their system esp. because noah is such a good help defender. I’m also not a bulls fan i’m a knick fan.

      • bkbell3 - Jul 14, 2014 at 2:41 PM

        One last thing, people seem to be forgetting that the bull will be integrating a lot of new pieces this year with boozer and others gone and rose coming back and adding pau and miritoc and mcbuckets etc. That’s a lot of moving pieces and even miami took a year to figure it out and tibbs isn’t exactly an offensive genius.

      • pudgalvin - Jul 14, 2014 at 4:01 PM

        Yeah, Noah, Gibson and Bulter a “slightly above average” defenders. And J.R. Smith only takes a couple bad shots a game.

      • chicitybulls - Jul 14, 2014 at 5:03 PM

        So you call the DPOY “a little above average at best”? Wow. What does it take to be a great defender in your book? The guy can guard bigs as well as switch out on pick and rolls and guard many….most perimeter players. Butler guards the best player in the league as well as anyone (lebron already has given Butler his credit). Gibson is known for blocking shots at the rim. You dont have to be a Bulls fan to know or see these things. You just have to watch basketball and not just the knicks.

      • bkbell3 - Jul 14, 2014 at 6:35 PM

        Noah is a good defender one on one but not great, he is a great help defender. Tibbs system is what got him the dpoy and that is voted on and doesn’t mean it’s correct. Now gibson is a great shot blocker just like tyson chandler is a great shot blocker at about 1 block per game. Hell bargani had more blocks per game than tyson. And what do the knicks have to do with this article? You bulls fans are over touchy and delusional about your players. What the hell does the fact that butler guards the best guys in the league have to do with how well he actually does it. Someone on each team has to do it. Hell i’ve seen donleavy covering lbj at times does that make him all world defender? The point is the bulls have a few good defenders and a lot of bad ones but a great coach who has a system that works well no matter who you plug in.

  10. wittenisgod - Jul 14, 2014 at 3:15 PM

    Bkbell!! You make me laugh do you know anything about basketball? You just mentioned korver and Nate Robinson when talking about the bulls! Look your facts up lad

  11. omniusprime - Jul 15, 2014 at 8:28 AM

    Thanks Pau for the two championships! Sad to see Pau go but he’s better off not being a Laker. Yet another bad mistake from jerky boy jimmy and klueless kupcake. Looks like another losing season so I won’t be bothering to watch the Fakers or the NBA this season. A shame they didn’t dump trash nash and a total screwup bringing in that loser linstupid.

  12. earpaniac - Jul 15, 2014 at 11:58 AM

    If he’s healthy, and is the exact same player he was just last year, this might be better for the Bulls. I never saw how Melo would’ve fit on the Bulls. Would’ve gladly taken a player that talented, it’s just his skill set seems so anti-Bulls.

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