The Chicago Bulls may be entering a period of rebuilding. In November, it was reported that Zach LaVine and the Bulls are open to a trade. Additionally, there are doubts surrounding DeMar DeRozan, who is in the final year of his contract and has not made much progress in extension talks with the team.
DeRozan is uncertain about his future with the Bulls and is eager to see which direction the team is heading in. Despite a mixed start to the 2023-24 season, DeRozan has been selected as an All-Star in the last two seasons and even earned an All-NBA Second Team spot in 2021-22 with strong averages of 27.9 points, 5.2 rebounds, and 4.9 assists per game.
If the Bulls decide to explore trades involving DeRozan, several teams might be interested in acquiring him.
The Los Angeles Lakers could be a potential destination for DeRozan. He previously believed he would join the Lakers in 2021, but ended up with the Bulls after they traded for Russell Westbrook. DeRozan could fill a similar role on the Lakers as LaVine would have, as the team has struggled offensively and heavily relies on 38-year-old LeBron James. While DeRozan lacks LaVine's 3-point shooting ability, he is a better passer and remains a strong scorer. The Lakers might find it easier to acquire DeRozan than LaVine due to the age difference, as well as his lower salary. A possible trade package could include D'Angelo Russell and either Rui Hachimura or Gabe Vincent.
In Philadelphia, the 76ers could benefit from adding DeRozan to their roster. The team has been looking to make a significant move since the James Harden trade and could pair DeRozan with Tyrese Maxey and Joel Embiid to strengthen their scoring power. Adding DeRozan would not affect the 76ers' salary cap as he will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season. The Bulls could also benefit from draft picks in exchange for DeRozan. There are restrictions on trading Marcus Morris, Nicolas Batum, Robert Covington, and KJ Martin, which expire on December 30.
The Miami Heat, who lost some offensive firepower in the offseason, could also pursue a trade for DeRozan. While the team ideally seeks a better shooter to complement Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo, DeRozan could provide a boost to their offense. The Heat have multiple options for securing a deal, including a trade involving Tyler Herro or building a package around either Kyle Lowry or Duncan Robinson. The team currently holds two first-round picks that could be included in the trade.
The Toronto Raptors, despite the past complications surrounding DeRozan's departure, might consider bringing him back. However, it is unlikely they would be willing to part with Pascal Siakam or O.G. Anunoby given DeRozan's age and impending free agency. A potential offer could be centered around Gary Trent Jr.'s salary and draft picks.
The New York Knicks should also be mentioned as a potential destination for DeRozan, as they have the resources to pursue a star player and could take advantage of the uncertainty in the Eastern Conference. The Knicks could offer players such as RJ Barrett, Immanuel Quickley, or Quentin Grimes. Alternatively, they could propose a pick-heavy offer involving Evan Fournier's contract.
DeRozan is currently in the second year of his three-year, $81.9 million contract with the Bulls. He is set to earn $28.6 million this season and will become an unrestricted free agent at the end of the year. Throughout his career, DeRozan has averaged 21.0 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 4.0 assists per game, with a shooting percentage of 46.7 and 29.2 from beyond the arc. He has also maintained an 84.0 percent free throw percentage.