As I mentioned earlier, last night the Bulls moved Tyson Chandler and picked up PJ Brown and JR Smith — apparently DA Weibring, JR Rider and TC from “Magnum PI” weren’t available.
The Bulls say they made the move because they had to. With Andres Nocioni, Ben Gordon and Kirk Hinrich all coming up on contract years, the Bulls were going to need some financial capability, I guess so that when Ben Wallace is broken down but still making max money three years from now they’ll be able to at least keep their guards.
I know Tyson Chandler is no force in the post, but really, all you can get back for him is PJ Brown and JR Smith? Really? I once had a long talk with one of the members of the Spurs about various post players from around the League, and we both agreed that Chandler was, by far, the best post player on the Bulls, because he always tries and manages to focus on rebounding and blocking shots. He’s averaged 9.4 rebounds per game the last two seasons, and he’s going to become something really solid in New Orleans, I think.
That’s not to belittle PJ Brown. The native of Louisiana pretty much carried the Hornets last year off the court; his home was partially destroyed during Katrina, and he really spearheaded a lot of the recovery efforts down there. On the court he went for 10 and 7 per game in about 32 minutes per, and his ability with the short jumpers reminds me of Kurt Thomas. But he’s getting older, and he’s only got one year left on his contract.
And then there’s JR Smith, who shouldn’t get any playing time behind Chicago’s stacked backcourt, particularly not with career averages of 39 percent from the floor and 32 percent from the three point line. And if JR thought playing for Byron Scott was too troublesome, just wait until he meets Scott Skiles, the little man who once challenged Shaq to a fight.
In the short term, the Bulls will certainly be good with all these guys, but trading defense, size, hustle and youth all for a decent mid-range jumper seems like a really hefty price to pay.
Too hefty, if you ask me.