Chicago Bulls: Why It Is Time to Trade Richard Hamilton

Michael GibbonsCorrespondent IIJuly 10, 2012

CHICAGO, IL - MAY 01: Richard Hamilton #32 of the Chicago Bulls drives against Elton Brand #42 of the Philadelphia 76ers in Game Two of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2012 NBA Playoffs at the United Center on May 1, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. The 76ers defeated the Bulls 109-92. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Just like the last time the Chicago Bulls signed a big free agent from Detroit, one year was enough.

Now, I am not saying that the Richard Hamilton experiment was a disaster like Ben Wallace's time in Chicago was, but it sure wasn't great.

Hamilton's time with the Bulls was derailed by injuries almost from the beginning. When healthy, he looked great, and alongside Derrick Rose, he made the Bulls look unbeatable. They were 21-7 when he was in the lineup.

However, that was the problem: He only appeared in 28 of the team's 66 regular-season games. He was so banged up that minute restrictions were put in place so that he could be healthy come playoff time.

Hamilton signed a three-year deal back in December worth $15 million. The third year of the deal has a team option, so really the Bulls are only on the hook for one more season.

I say, why even be on the hook for that? Now is the time for the Bulls to trade Hamilton to a team that thinks it has a shot at winning this season.

Boston seems to be making a run at it one more time, and wouldn't Hamilton be the perfect replacement for Ray Allen?

What about Memphis? The only shooting guard listed on its roster is Tony Allen. Hamilton would give them some veteran experience and some much-needed shooting at the position.

Hamilton was a nice addition last offseason, but without a healthy Rose, he is a luxury. They would be better off bringing someone in like Courtney Lee or Gerald Green and handing one of them the starting spot.

With half the roster in flux, it makes no sense that Hamilton hasn't been mentioned to be on the move as well.

According to HOOPSWORLD's Alex Kennedy via Twitter, they have informed C.J. Watson that they are not picking up his option.

Omer Asik has signed an offer sheet with Houston, per Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski.

And the futures of Ronnie Brewer and Kyle Korver are both in the air.

Also, there has been no mention of bringing back fan favorites Brian Scalabrine and John Lucas III.

If the Bulls head into the season with Hamilton on the roster, it will be a missed opportunity. They cannot afford to hold onto him until the trade deadline or wait to see how Rose's rehab is going, because Hamilton himself may break down before then.

They can easily sign Michael Redd to be their veteran shooting guard for a much cheaper price, which will help them avoid the luxury tax.

The iron is hot and now is the time to strike. Let's hope general manager Gar Foreman can feel the heat.


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