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Report: Bulls promised not to trade Nikola Mirotic

Jul 25, 2014, 9:55 AM EDT

Nikola Mirotic, Gar Forman Nikola Mirotic, Gar Forman

Nikola Mirotic paid a lot of money to join the Chicago Bulls this summer.

The reported buyout from his European team was more than $3 million, and the Bulls could contribute only $600,000 without it counting against the cap (though I’m not certain they did). That left a lot for Mirotic to cover.

And what has it gotten him?

His name mentioned in Kevin Love trade rumors.

Technically, Chicago can’t trade Mirotic until Aug. 17. As applies to Andrew Wiggins, draft picks can’t be traded for 30 days after signing.

However, the Bulls and Timberwolves can discuss a trade involving Mirotic now as long as they wait to officially complete it.

There’s just one hitch.

David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune:

Mirotic bought out his contract with Real Madrid of the Spanish League only after the Bulls committed to keeping him in Chicago, according to a source familiar with negotiations.

Sometimes, conditions of such agreements – “We won’t trade you unless…” – get lost  in the game of telephone from management to the player to the media, and there could be other people in the chain between those links. The miscommunication possibility is even more likely with someone like Mirotic, who admits his English is not good. (How is Gar Foreman’s Montenegrin?)

However, for the sake of this post, let’s assume the Bulls expressly promised Mirotic they’d keep him in Chicago.

Since signing Mirotic, they’ve added Pau Gasol, another big man who will eat up minutes. It seems possible the Bulls and Mirotic could have mutually agreed to lift the trade embargo, even if him remaining in Chicago remains the preferred option.

Of course, these concerns are purely ethical rather than technical. Mirotic doesn’t have a no-trade clause, and from Aug. 17 on, the Bulls can unilaterally trade him. That’s just a pitfall of playing in the NBA, which doesn’t allow no-trade clauses unless a player has spent eight years in the league and four with the team signing him.

But if the Bulls promised not to trade Mirotic for a period of time, they should honor that.

And if they can get Love, they should try their hardest to talk Mirotic into the beauty of Minnesota.

  1. zoomy123 - Jul 25, 2014 at 10:05 AM

    This is a perfect example of why when people talk about players being “loyal” to their team I just disregard them. The NBA is a business first. Any apparent loyalty between a player and a team is just an illusion created by circumstance and convenience. I always find it arrogant and silly for people with no skin in the game to tell players to “take less money if they really care about winning” or “show loyalty to the team that drafted you.” Just shut up.

    • fanofthegame79 - Jul 25, 2014 at 11:06 AM


    • bkbell3 - Jul 25, 2014 at 1:49 PM

      Agree 100% but that’s why fan is short for fanatic. Players,coaches,teams and fans want what they want and not everybody can get what they want. Even fans will turn on a player and want to get rid of them when their play drops off and their is a chance for their team to chase after shinny objects. Shorts careers that can be cut off by an injury at anytime, generational money involved, in the end it’s a business.

  2. casualcommenter - Jul 25, 2014 at 10:37 AM

    ….To me, it makes no sense.

    If you want a team to “promise” they won’t trade you, you should demand they put a no-trade clause in your contract.

    If a team “promises” not to trade you but then refuses to put in a no-trade clause in your contract, that’s their way of telling you they don’t want to be contractually obligated to honor their promise.

    In other words, their “promise” means nothing.

    • zoomy123 - Jul 25, 2014 at 10:45 AM

      The article already pointed out that players are not eligible for a no-trade clause until they’ve been in the league for 8 years.

  3. crillbill - Jul 25, 2014 at 11:04 AM

    Just tell him Minnesota is in Chicago. Most of the USA probably couldn’t tell you where Chicago is anyway on a map.

  4. edavidberg - Jul 25, 2014 at 12:14 PM

    Mirotic isn’t going anywhere.

  5. rosloe62 - Jul 25, 2014 at 12:26 PM

    The Bulls can win with their current roster.

    • muhangis - Jul 25, 2014 at 11:12 PM

      Win a game yes. Win the championship, no.

  6. jigwig13 - Jul 25, 2014 at 12:45 PM

    I don’t get why bulls would give up so much when they just got pau

    • muhangis - Jul 25, 2014 at 11:18 PM

      This is a joke right?

      Cause I would easily include Pau in that deal. As a Laker fan, I know that Pau isn’t half of what he used to be. And you are looking ahead at only one season, Pau will turn 35 this season and on a great decline!

      Love/Rose/Noah combo would serve the Bulls years into the future! That would be a top championship contender for years, while they are not near that right now.

  7. jerze2387 - Jul 25, 2014 at 1:52 PM

    Theyre not trading Mirotic for love. Its just Minnesota trying to leverage all they can from Cleveand and golden State.

  8. conradtwin1 - Jul 25, 2014 at 3:32 PM

    I’d like the Bulls to stand pat to start the season see how this team plays the first 3 months or so before making any changes. I like the depth overall and they should be a top 3 team in the East for sure with Rose healthy.

    • muhangis - Jul 25, 2014 at 11:14 PM

      Like seeing how the Pacers played the first 3 months of last season… ?

      Kevin Love makes this team A WHOLE LOT better!!! End of discussion.

      Amazing the blindness of some ppl

  9. saint1997 - Jul 25, 2014 at 6:19 PM

    Bulls would almost have to trade Mirotic, I mean between Love, Gasol and Noah there would be no front court minutes for him whatsoever

  10. ernwop64 - Jul 25, 2014 at 8:01 PM

    If he is any good he can get minutes at center and power forward as a back up and take over after Gasol retires .Mirotic is only 23 years old,good problem to have.

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