Bulls trade Nikola Mirotic to Pelicans

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Two days after trade talks neared the finish line before breaking down, the Chicago Bulls and New Orleans Pelicans came to terms Thursday on a deal that sent Nikola Mirotic and a 2018 second-round pick to the Big Easy in exchange for a top-five-protected 2018 first-round pick, Omer Asik, Tony Allen and Jameer Nelson, according to ESPN.com's Adrian Wojnarowski.

"We tried to be professional, make things work on the court - we had great chemistry playing the high-low game", Portis said after practice at USC. As for the Bulls, they got their first-round pick. With 31 games left and executive vice president John Paxson emphasizing that players such as Paul Zipser, Cristiano Felicio and Cameron Payne need playing time down the stretch, the rebuild has gotten even more real. Boston can pay Monroe out of its $8.4 million disabled player exception for Gordon Hayward, but playing time appears to be a major factor in Monroe's decision, league sources said.

"We've decided to make the change and rebuild this roster", said John Paxson, Bulls Executive Vice President of Basketball Operations, according to a June 23 Bleacher Report.

The Bulls too will move forward without Mirotic, their leading scorer.

It was never going to get any better after the incident on October 17. It's about getting our guys better, developing their skill sets and playing good, hard, competitive basketball.

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Hoiberg thanked Mirotic for his play and professionalism. "He really handled the (Portis) situation as well as he possibly could". But with both him and Portis on the court, Chicago would remain steady. Once Mirotic gets up to speed in his new surroundings, though, he should have no trouble displacing the nine-year veteran. "We just moved on from the situation. I'm still coming in every day trying to be a better basketball player every day". I'm still sorry for what I did.

"As a player, my mindset was to worry about the things I can control".

With Kris Dunn (illness) and Lauri Markkanen (birth of his son) unlikely to play the next two games, the Bulls aren't just short-handed but also in an obvious full-court press by the front office in the tanking process.

"Honestly, man, I'm just over the situation, talking about Niko. I'm just anxious about my future".

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