Published November 20, 2014
DEERFIELD, Ill. -- The Chicago Bulls agreed to trade veteran guard Kirk Hinrich and the 17th pick in the draft to the Washington Wizards on Thursday, freeing up more salary-cap space, a person familiar with the situation said.
The Bulls will receive a future second-round pick in the deal, which gives them enough room to go after two high-profile free agents.
The person told The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity because the deal can't become official until July 8, when the new salary cap takes hold and the Wizards can take Hinrich's $9 million salary for next season without having to send back something of similar financial value.
ESPN first reported the trade.
Hinrich gives the Wizards a reliable veteran in the backcourt to go with No. 1 pick John Wall and Gilbert Arenas.
For Chicago, the deal clears $10.3 million from the books for next year and leaves the Bulls with about $30 million to spend in a star-studded free agent market that will likely include LeBron James, Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade. Depending on where the cap actually winds up, they might have enough to offer two maximum contracts.
If not, they'll be close.
The Bulls have an All-Star point guard in Derrick Rose and are looking for more after back-to-back 41-win seasons that ended with first-round playoff losses. They fired coach Vinny Del Negro and replaced him with longtime NBA assistant Tom Thibodeau, the mastermind behind a dominant defense that helped Boston reach the NBA finals two of the past three years.
The longest tenured active Bulls player, Hinrich has averaged 13.4 points in seven seasons and was John Paxson's first draft pick as general manager in 2003.