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Joakim Noah reportedly recruiting Carmelo Anthony to Bulls

Carmelo AnthonyCarmelo Anthony has done nothing but insist he intends to remain with the New York Knicks if and when he opts out of his current contract at the end of the season. In fact, he even said he would take a pay cut on his new deal to help the team sign top talent in free agency. That isn’t enough to stop Joakim Noah from trying.

According to ESPN’s Chris Broussard, a source said Noah was recruiting Anthony to the Chicago Bulls during All-Star weekend in New Orleans.

“I’m told that Joakim said to Melo, ‘Look, you can go to Los Angeles. But if you want to win a ring, if you want your legacy to be about winning, come to Chicago,’” Broussard reported. “Melo, I’m told, said, ‘Look, I’ve been watching you guys. I admire how hard you play. I admire how hungry you are. Oh, and by the way, my son’s favorite player – Derrick Rose.’

“It seems like it intrigued him.”

Broussard noted that Chicago would have to amnesty Carlos Boozer to offer ‘Melo a deal starting at $15 million per year, which is much less than the $22.4 million he is eligible to earn with a max contract. If they trade Mike Dunleavy and his $3 million salary they could offer Anthony around $18 million.

Does Anthony love New York so much that he is willing to take a pay cut to remain there, or was his point that he is willing to take less money anywhere to improve his chances of winning a championship? Assuming Rose comes back healthy, the Bulls look much closer to a championship team than the Knicks do. They certainly have the coaching advantage with Tom Thibodeau.

From an endorsement standpoint, Carmelo could earn just as much in Chicago as New York. The Knicks are 22-40 and are likely going to miss the playoffs. The Bulls remain fourth in the Eastern Conference despite not having their best player. I think we all know what Jim Boeheim would tell Anthony to do.

Report: Bulls looking to trade Luol Deng, will amnesty Carlos Boozer

Luol Deng Carlos BoozerDerrick Rose may soon become one unhappy Chicago Bull.

Remember last month we told you that Rose was concerned that the Chicago Bulls might go through a rebuilding period? Well it sounds like that process is going to happen.

The New York Daily News’ Mitch Lawrence reported on Saturday that the Bulls are looking to trade Luol Deng and will likely amnesty Carlos Boozer.

[The Bulls will] definitely be looking to deal Luol Deng before the Feb. 20 trading deadline. Deng is a free agent this summer and the Bulls don’t want to pay him anything close to top dollar. The second part of their house-cleaning: They intend on using their amnesty move this coming summer to part ways with Carlos Boozer.

There have been numerous trade rumors concerning Deng, so this should not come as a surprise. Deng is a very fine player who has consistently put up strong shooting and rebounding numbers since entering the league in 2004, so we have little doubt they’ll be able to find a trade partner for him.

Boozer is set to earn $16.8 million next season, so it sounds like the Bulls just don’t feel like he’s worth paying the money to, either. Boozer has been dealing with a knee injury lately.

The Bulls’ plan to rebuild rather than pay big money to these veterans next season (or beyond) makes sense. Back-to-back knee injuries to Rose have completely changed their plan longterm. If they don’t know if Rose will play like an MVP — or be able to play at all — why keep an expensive surrounding cast around him when they can acquire other assets instead?

Chest bump to Eye on Basketball

Man pops out of Bulls mascot costume, proposes to Bulls dancer (Video)

Bulls-mascot-proposalBeing a Chicago Bulls dancer has its perks. You get to watch a lot of basketball, make a little money, stay in shape, and get close to some of the best athletes in the world. Some other benefits include the possibility of your boyfriend popping out of a mascot costume and proposing to you.

During Chicago’s game against the Miami Heat, Bulls mascot Benny the Bull gathered around with the “Luvabulls” dancers as a person in an inflatable Bulls mascot suit approached the group. As that popular “I think I wanna marry you” song played over the stadium speakers, a man jumped out of the suit and got down on one knee. She said yes.

Sporting event proposals are pretty common, but give this guy credit for finding a way to put a unique spin on it. He also deserves credit for not getting shut down in front of an arena full of people. Unfortunately, that’s something we have seen before.

Video via SI.com’s Point Forward

Lil Wayne has joined the Chicago Bulls bandwaggon

Lil Wayne Chicago Bulls

Lil Wayne is the biggest bandwaggon fan in sports. That has been long established. He also has a dislike for the Miami Heat that goes back to 2011 when he complained that LeBron James and Dwyane Wade ignored him at games. He even went off on Chris Bosh in February.

Apparently Lil Wayne’s dislike for the Heat is so strong he has joined the Chicago Bulls bandwaggon.

The Bulls beat the Heat 93-86 in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinals playoff series on Monday night. Bulls guard Rip Hamilton shared a photo on Instagram that he says was of him and his Bulls teammates celebrating the win with Lil Wayne. You can see Taj Gibson, Nazr Mohammed, Vladimir Radmanovich, and Rip in the photo with Weezy. Rip says that was after they all went to dinner.

Tunechi was also rooting for the Bulls during the game. He sent this tweet about Nate Robinson, who had a 24-point second half:

First Lil Wayne was cheering against the Heat when they played the Lakers. Now he’s rooting on the Bulls. I bet if you paid him enough money he’d root for your team, too.

Photo: Instagram/Rip Hamilton

Luol Deng tweets support for Bulls from his hospital bed (Picture)

Luol-Deng-hospital-bed

The Chicago Bulls somehow continue to win games despite their plethora of significant injuries. Already without the 2011 NBA MVP in Derrick Rose, Chicago is also missing Luol Deng. The big man was suffering from flu-like symptoms before Game 6 against the Brooklyn Nets and has not been able to suit up since because of complications stemming from a spinal tap he underwent to test for viral meningitis.

On Monday night, Deng watched the Bulls take a 1-0 series lead of the Miami Heat from his hospital bed. He shared the photo you see above along with the following tweet:

[Read more...]

Joakim Noah: Bulls will win Game 7

The Chicago Bulls had the Brooklyn Nets right where they wanted them when they took a 3-1 series lead last weekend, but now the tables have turned completely. Following their 95-92 win over Chicago in Game 6 on Thursday night, the Nets now get to host Game 7 in Brooklyn. Joakim Noah does not seem concerned.

“We’re a team of fighters,” Noah said Thursday, via ESPNChicago.com. “We keep getting punched in the face but we fight back. I’m proud of this team, and we’re going to go into a hostile environment in Brooklyn and we’re going to win.”

There was really nothing else Noah could say, but the odds are stacked against Chicago at the moment. For starters, winning a Game 7 on the road is an incredibly difficult task. Nets fans will be at their loudest looking for their first playoff series win in their new building and city, which will be tough for the Bulls to overcome.

Then, there’s the issue of health. Game 7 is Saturday night. On Thursday night, Nate Robinson was puking into a trash can during timeouts and Taj Gibson was held to three points and three rebounds while battling a similar illness. Luol Deng, who underwent a spinal tap to test for viral meningitis (which came back negative), was unable to play. Noah has also been battling a foot issue that he admitted is incredibly painful at times.

Simply put, Chicago is battling illness at the worst time possible. If Robinson, Gibson and Deng are all able to recover over the next two days, there’s no reason they can’t defeat the Nets on the road. If not, Brooklyn will have the upper hand in a variety of ways.

Photo credit: Mike DiNovo-US PRESSWIRE

LeBron James complains about physical play after loss to Bulls

LeBron James is not used to losing. Why should he be? The Miami Heat had won 27 games in a row prior to Wednesday night’s loss to the Chicago Bulls. After the game, LeBron was understandably frustrated after being called for a questionable flagrant foul and having a fan try to snatch his headband. He also thought the physicality that Chicago played with crossed the line.

“First of all Kirk Hinrich in the first quarter basically grabbed me with two hands and brought me to the ground,” LeBron told reporters after the game, via CSNChicago.com. “And the last one, Taj Gibson was able to collar me around my shoulder and bring me to the ground.Those are not basketball plays and it’s been happening all year. And I was able to keep my cool and try to spell [Spoelstra], ‘Let’s not worry about it too much.’ But it is getting to me.”

It was after the Gibson foul that James lowered a shoulder into Carlos Boozer and was called for a flagrant foul. I’m sure LeBron has been dealing with physical play all season, but it’s no coincidence that we haven’t heard much from him about it.

“I’m not sitting here crying about anything,” he continued. “I play the game at a high level, I play with a lot of aggression, I understand that some of the plays are on the borderline of a basketball play or not. But sometimes, you know, I don’t know … it’s frustrating.”

Just stop right there, Bron Bron. Don’t make us think the only reason we’ve started to like you and your quirky antics is that you’ve been winning. Are we about to see the old LeBron now that the Heat can’t break the record for most consecutive regular season wins? I sure hope not.

Photo credit: David Butler II-US PRESSWIRE