Are the Orlando Magic interested in acquiring Carlos Boozer from the Chicago Bulls?
Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld.com seems to think so.
Kennedy wrote in his chat on Friday afternoon that the Magic could be partners with the Bulls if they do place the 29-year-old power forward on the trading block.
“(I)f he does become available, the Orlando Magic will certainly express some level of interest,” Kennedy wrote. “In the past, Dwight Howard has made it very clear to Otis Smith that he wants to play with Boozer and it’s no secret that the two are best friends. They even stay at each other’s houses during the offseason. With the Magic trying to do anything they can to keep Howard happy, they would have to make a play for Boozer should he become available.”
Kennedy did caution that Boozer is not necessarily up for grabs yet, although the perception around Chicago is that Boozer is a bust after signing a five-year, $80 million contract last offseason.
It wasn’t Boozer’s regular season play that created that notion (although playing in only 59 games was frustrating for Chicago) as much as it was his postseason disappearing act (shot 43 percent from the field and averaged 12.6 points per game.)
So if Boozer is available are the Magic then viable trade partners?
The Bulls’ management is likely unhappy with Boozer’s play as his worth is at an all-time low and would hate to pay him $75 million the next four years. Plus Chicago has a more than suitable replacement for him in forward Taj Gibson.
The Magic are also loaded with bad contracts and players who have virtually no perceivable trade value (i.e. Hedo Turkoglu and Gilbert Arenas) so it is plausible that two teams with bad assets could make a deal.
Chicago would probably be looking to find a shooting guard to run with MVP point guard Derek Rose and the Magic could put a couple of packages together for Boozer involving guards.
1.) Sign and trade with Jason Richardson- At 30 years old, Richardson would likely demand somewhere near a $10 million per year contract. That and Ryand Anderson should get the two sides there.
2.) J.J. Redick and Brandon Bass- Chicago already displayed an interest in Redick when they tried to sign him last season so this makes sense. Plus Bass gives Chicago depth at the position they’d become weaker at.
Obviously draft picks and other compensatory options would be included in these packages, but the salaries would be close enough to work and the Bulls would get a starting caliber shooting guard in return and unload a contract they no longer want.
The Magic on the other hand would receive the following:
1.) A significant upgrade at a power forward.
2.) A best friend of Dwight Howard’s, which might be give the center extra incentive to stay in Orlando.
3.) Another big contract. What the heck is one more?
Additionally, Boozer represents more value with Orlando than he does with Chicago as his mid-range game would perfectly compliment Howard’s repertoire, as opposed to working with a limited Joakim Noah.
This isn’t to say the trade is likely to happen but on paper it makes a lot of sense for both teams.