Pelicans Trade Asik & 1st Round Pick To Bulls For Nikola Mirotic
With Boogie Cousins injured, the New Orleans Pelicans needed another capable player in the frontcourt.
Today, they traded for forward Nikola Mirotic, as first reported by Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
Two days ago, Vincent Goodwill of NBC Sports Chicago reported a deal was likely going down, but then the discussions broke down.
Today, both sides agreed on a move that would keep the Pelicans under the luxury tax, and send Mirotic New Orleans, along with a second round draft pick.
In exchange, Chicago receives center Omer Asik, the Pelicans 2018 first round pick with minimal protections (per Wojnarowski), along with guards Tony Allen and Jameer Nelson, both of whom will likely be waived.
The team option on Mirotic's contract was exercised to consummate the trade. He will have one year left on his deal next season at $12.5 million.
The move also clears up roster spots for the Pelicans who are in pursuit of center Greg Monroe, who agreed to a buyout with the Phoenix Suns yesterday.
Monroe, a New Orleans native, would need to agree to the league minimum (or very close to it) to joined the Pelicans for the rest of the season to keep the team from going into the luxury tax.
If he were to sign at the minimum for the remainder of the league year, the team could add another player at the prorated minimum exception.