Could The Charlotte Hornets Trade For Derrick Rose?


With the Chicago Bulls reportedly interested in dealing Derrick Rose, would the Charlotte Hornets be interested?

With the season long since over the Charlotte Hornets, and the Chicago Bulls being eliminated by the Cleveland Cavaliers, the front office of both teams now embarks on a perilous journey through the NBA off-season in search of an upgrade in talent.

In Charlotte the team desperately needs offense. Their point guard and face of the franchise just finished another season shooting under 40%. Their big time free agent signing of 2014 turned in one of the worst seasons in NBA history. Injuries and poor play turned a playoff team last season into a lottery team in 2015.

Meanwhile, Chicago finally got its leader and point guard healthy again, and yet still wheezed out in the second round of the playoffs against a Cleveland Cavaliers squad playing without Kevin Love and featuring an injured Kyrie Irving and a suspended(for the first two games) J.R. Smith.

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These teams have more in common than just a grind-it-out playing style that is short on offense and big on heart. They both have realized that the ceiling of their current rosters are not good enough. The Hornets want to be in the playoffs every year, and hope to actually win a playoff game sometime soon.

The Bulls are looking towards a championship run, but their improvements are limited with a monster contract being given out to the perennially injured Rose. Zach Lowe of, a fantastic NBA writer, recently wrote about the Bulls and how this might have been their last playoff run together:

"But the Bulls can’t win four series playing offense the way they played it this season — especially if Rose can’t at least regain All-Star form. They couldn’t score against a wheezing, limping Cleveland team. Mirotic needs to be here, and the Bulls need to keep using him. A new offensive guru somewhere on the coaching staff would help.Regardless, these Bulls may not be able to win four playoff series. They’ll struggle to upgrade the team this summer, and if they re-sign Noah in the summer of 2016, they may not even have much room left over for the coming cap space orgy. That is the penalty for having a super-max deal attached to a player who, sadly, can’t approach that level of play anymore. If Rose tops out in his current form, that contract is an anvil."

It was an interesting read, and it made me wonder if there would perhaps be a deal made between the two teams. At first, my thoughts went toward Taj Gibson or other role players on the team, but then I saw this video on Bleacher Report.

The Chicago Bulls front office, already salivating at the thought of firing their successful head coach Thom Thibodeau, are also desperate to unload Derrick Rose.

Now that story is a little bit old, since it is from a time before the Bulls playoff run, but given that Chicago still failed to make the conference finals even with a healthy Rose, it stands to reason that their stance has not changed.

Which brings up the idea that Chicago could trade Rose to the Charlotte Hornets?

It is not as crazy as you might think. The Bulls hate paying the luxury tax despite being in a gigantic market. They will be over the tax line if they do not do anything this off-season, given that Jimmy Butler is about to get paid.

As Lowe pointed out above, their current group tops out somewhere between playoff fodder and dark horse finals contender. No one seriously believes this team can an NBA championship anymore. The players have aged, and there are too many injuries. The roster has been ground into dust by the heavy handed Thibodeau.

If Charlotte could offer a package that would give the Bulls some payroll relief and enough talent to not make it look like a pure salary dump, then perhaps they would pull the trigger.

Any trade would start with the Hornets sending Lance Stephenson back to Chicago, due to his contract being non-guaranteed beyond this season. That would give the Bulls payroll relief, while allowing Stephenson to get a fresh start.

After that, perhaps ship Kemba Walker to Chicago and offer to swap draft picks this year, then maybe the deal gets done. The starting five for Charlotte in 2015-16 would be:

Rose, Shooting Guard X(Gerald Henderson, Mo Williams, Free Agent to be name, etc), Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Noah Vonleh/Cody Zeller, and Al Jefferson.

That is an improvement, especially if the Hornets can find a bargain bin free agent who can shoot from the two-guard position. Rose, even in his diminished form, provides scoring punch not seen on this team in quite some time.

Meanwhile, the Hornets own albatross, Stephenson, is gone along with the overrated Walker. This would be a huge shake-up of the roster, and would get fans excited again about the chances of seeing a playoff win in 2016.

What do you think? Would you trade for Derrick Rose?

Next: Hornets And NBA Draft Reform