There's been a lot of talk about the Utah Jazz's point guard Mike Conley potentially being on the move this offseason. With the Jazz letting go of All-Stars Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert in separate transactions in the last few months, Utah's cadre of veterans could also be on the way out. One team that has come up as a potential landing spot for Conley is the Chicago Bulls.
Conley for Vucevic?
While the Bulls head to training camp without many questions save for starting point guard Lonzo Ball—who's recovering from arthroscopic knee surgery—one issue that may become prickly later on is the status of starting center Nicola Vucevic.
An unrestricted free agent next season, Vucevic will be in line for a hefty raise on the $22 million he's making this season. It's unlikely that the Bulls will be able to keep him, so they may need to decide sooner rather than later. David Thorpe of TrueHoop proposed a trade that might solve this dilemma and provide both teams with what they need—send Conley to the Bulls in exchange for Vucevic.
"Conley would offset the immediate loss of Lonzo Ball and then work very well next to Alex Caruso in the second unit," said Thorpe.
The trade makes sense for both teams. The Jazz get a talented player in Vucevic, who averaged a double-double last season with 17.6 points and 11 rebounds per game. With Gobert gone, Vucevic would step in and provide the Jazz with a much-needed inside presence. The Bulls get a reliable veteran point guard who can mentor Ball and provide some scoring punch off the bench.
Who will man the middle for the Bulls?
Should the Bulls decide to move on from Vucevic, the next question is, do the Bulls have a succession plan in place?
"Should the Bulls decide to nix the Nikola Vucevic experiment, they could package him with a 2027 first-round pick for Conley—but that would require the Bulls brain trust to have a plan to replace Vooch," Thorpe added.
The most logical choice would be newly-signed Andre Drummond. A two-time All-Star, the 29-year-old Drummond is one of the best rebounders in the league and would help the Bulls' frontcourt (7.9 points, 9.3 rebounds per game last season).
The Conley-to-the-Bulls rumors are just that—rumors. But with the Jazz unloading some of their veteran talent and the Bulls looking to add a reliable veteran point guard, it's a trade that makes sense for both teams. Only time will tell if it comes to fruition.