Derrick Rose, the 2011 NBA MVP and 3x All-Star was traded to the New York Knicks last week. The five-player swap saw Rose and G Justin Holiday go to NY in exchange for C, Robin Lopez, veteran guard Jose Calderon, guard, Jerian Grant and a 2nd round pick. Officially ending the Rose era in Chicago will be a tough pill to swallow for die hard Bulls fans but in the long term I feel the trade will benefit the team.

At first glance, I automatically declared the Knicks the winners of this trade. However, I realized I was reacting as a fan of the game and not realistically dissecting what was actually happening. Though Chicago traded the hometown, former all-star for what at first seems like pennies on the dollar, the trade was clearly more of a win for both teams and here’s why:

Chicago Bulls

  1. Brings in cap relief for Chicago

         

The Bulls might be parting with their best player since the post MJ, era but due to injuries and inconsistent play, Rose appears to have his best basketball behind them. He is on the last year of a 90 million dollar deal that he signed in 2012 and removing that contract off the books frees up a few million that could be used on role players this year.

     2. Allows them to add pieces and fill needs

With Lopez, Chicago is gaining a relatively low cost, high impact big man. With both Pau Gasol’s and Joakim Noah’s future both unclear in the Windy City, Chicago was looking thinner than Oprah nowadays in the front court. Jerian Grant has a lot of potential to becoming the point guard of the future in Fred Hoiberg’s offense. He was brutally underused in NY but came on strong at the end of the year. Calderon plays zero defense but he is a pass first PG that will provide scoring opportunities for other players. He also can serve as a mentor for Chicago’s younger guards.

      3.  Allows them to build chemistry

It’s no secret that there was clearly tension between Rose, management and coaches. Also, there was a lot made of his relationship with fellow All-Star, Jimmy Butler’s. Some days they worked on the court, but most days  they did not. Shipping Rose, makes Chicago undisputedly Jimmy Butler’s team and now the team can focus on building around him accordingly.

New York Knicks

  1. Upgrades Point Guard Position

NY had been going through starting pgs like the Cleveland Browns go through quarterbacks (sorry guys). With Rose barring injury, they now have a proven, top 12 point guard to run the offense. Rose averaged 16 points and 4 assists last season, as he played 66 games which is the most that he has played for a very long time. The risk to critics may seem steep considering Rose’s injury history however, the risk is lower considering the potential reward if Rose can actually stay healthy. Also, if all fails the team will just have to pay Derrick 21 million, which is what he is due for the final year of his deal. If all works out, Phil Jackson and Derrick Rose may opt to enter into an agreement to keep the guard in New York following the one year experiment. 

        2. Forms a new BIG Three

A formation of a “BIG 3,” seems to be the go-to strategy for many teams these days. The formation really picked up steam, with LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwayne Wade in Miami, then it followed LeBron to Cleveland as he teamed up with Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love. Russ and KD put up great numbers for years as a dynamic duo but that third scoring option has proven to be a recipe for success and a BIG 3 of Carmelo Anthony, Derrick Rose, and Kristaps Porzingis has potential on paper to be quite a trio. Porzingis had a very solid rookie campaign and finished 2nd in Rookie of the Year voting. He has a lot of upside and can flat out ball. Having a penetrator and floor general of Rose’s caliber will only help to bolster his progression.

      3. Makes NY a more attractive FA destination

According to some reports, Knicks president of basketball operations Phil Jackson reportedly told Derrick Rose that they would be pursuing top FA target Kevin Durant. Whether Durant would seriously consider NY is up for debate but with the acquisition of Rose, the Knicks have potentially set themselves up to be a real player in free agency this offseason.

Grades

If I had to grade both teams on this trade, I would give Chicago a B+ and give NY an A-. However, for NY that grade can change very quickly if Rose does not stay healthy. The positive for both Rose and NY is that since he is essentially playing on a one-year contract so the two can part ways if things does not work. The Knicks would then still have a lot of potential salary cap room to sign players that will be free agents in the 2017 offseason. We will see come next season what the verdict will be.

Which team won this trade in your opinion?

Did Chicago get enough in exchange for dealing Rose?

Will Derrick Rose be successful and healthy in NY?

~Ray Simpson

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