As peak NBA free agency winds down, the Chicago Bulls are still in the market for frontcourt depth.
Despite having already put in a minimum salary offer to Marcus Camby, the organization does not appear ready to wait around while the former Knicks big man reportedly decides between identical offers from the Bulls, Rockets and Heat. (The last I read, the Rockets are considered to be the favorite to land Camby.)
According to hoopsworld's NBA Senior Writer Alex Kennedy, the Bulls have been linked to San Antonio Spurs big man DeJuan Blair. Kennedy went on to speculate that Chicago is a realistic spot to land Blair because the Bulls have minutes to offer the young big behind All-Star center Joakim Noah.
Blair, 24, is short for a big man at 6-foot-7, but his wide-bodied, 269 lb. frame allows him to take up the requisite space required to survive in the paint.
Memphis Grizzlies VP of Basketball Operations John Hollinger grades Blair as a great rebounder ,citing Synergy stats, but also as a shaky defender who can't spread the floor with limited shooting range.
The latter helps explain why Spurs Coach Gregg Popovich banished the 4-year pro to the end end of the bench last season when Blair only played 14.0 minutes a game, the lowest in his career.
Blair however, has proven time and time again to be a higly effective offensive player when given the opportunity. He's also surprisingly nimble for a man of his stature, particularly when you consider that he had both ACL's removed during his high school days in separate surgeries.
The Pitt alum has averaged 52.8% from the floor in his four seasons in San Antonio, and has never averaged below 50.1% in a given season, illustrating his soft touch around the rim.
Adding a player like Blair to the Bulls frontcourt would provide Coach Tom Thibodeau with some bulk, rebounding and much needed scoring punch off the bench.
Adam Jun writes Chicago Bulls content for the Chicago Hoops Forum on sportsideo.com
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