Today’s uber-rumor du jour comes from Comcast SportsNet Chicago‘s Bulls reporter Aggrey Sam, who tweeted the following:
Unconfirmed speculation has Bulls putting deal in place to send Deng to Portland for Jerryd Bayless and Joel Pryzbilla.
UPDATE: This rumor supposedly originated on the OregonLive forums. Here’s a link to the original post.
The key words in all of this are ‘unconfirmed speculation’ which should have you chugging salt at an alarming rate. That being said, with the Bulls desperately attempting to get cap space, you could see where they may try this. Rumors of Deng to Portland have been going on for years, so this is nothing new. With his defensive ability and offensive skills, he would be an excellent sixth man for the Blazers…but that’s only if he can stay healthy. His injury-proneness plus the weird injury karma surrounding the Blazers is not a good combination. Also he still is not much of a shooter. You also have to question the wisdom of trading for Luol Deng after you traded for Luke Babbitt, who may not be as good but is younger and much, much cheaper.
To me this smells like a deadline deal. Portland doesn’t have to make this move right now, if they wanted to they could make this at a later date. Doing it now would only be doing the Bulls a favor, and earning the hate of the rest of the Eastern Conference.