Boozer to miss 8 weeks after bizarre accident

Carlos Boozer has a broken hand that is going to require surgery and he’s set to miss the next eight weeks.

Boozer suffered the injury on Saturday during the Bulls’ day off. Boozer tripped over a bag in his house and fell.

“[I was] at my house, came around the corner, fell over a bag, put my arm down to kind of brace myself,” Boozer said. “I’ll get surgery on Tuesday and do my rehab, be conditioned and run with the guys. The good thing about it was at least it only happened in the preseason.

The team says Boozer broke the fifth metacarpal bone in his hand. He was evaluated by team physician Dr. Brian Cole and hand specialist Dr. Marc Cohen of Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush.

There’s injury-prone, and then there’s this. Good grief. I wonder who put the bag “around the corner” — whoever it was, they’re probably going to cost the Bulls a few wins in November.

Boozer has already missed 145 games in his career, and now he’s going to miss around 15 more with this injury, including a particularly brutal seven-game road trip that includes the Spurs, Nuggets, Suns, Lakers, Mavs and Rockets. In fact, nine of the Bulls’ first 15 games are on the road, so it wouldn’t be surprising if Chicago is sitting at 6-9 or 7-8 at the end of November.

The good news is that Taj Gibson is a very capable power forward, so the Bulls won’t lose much in the starting lineup. But Gibson will have to be replaced on the bench, and that’s where Boozer’s minutes will really be missed.

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NBA free agency, in haiku!

You know you’re burned out on NBA news and rumors when you decide to write 10 haiku to summarize the NBA Summer of 2010. Off we go (in the English 5-7-5 syllable format)…

Atlanta spends big
to keep twenty-eight year-old
Here comes the remorse

Wade, Bosh, then LeBron
Super Friends in Miami
Much to Dan’s chagrin

No doubt cathartic
Dan Gilbert’s manifesto
only hurts the Cavs

Pat Riley, the pimp
But they have to play the games
There’s still work to do

Read the rest of this entry »

Jefferson to the Jazz?

If you want a lesson on how NBA trade exceptions are used, take a look at what the Utah Jazz are reportedly doing to acquire Al Jefferson.

The Utah Jazz have quickly moved into the lead to acquire Al Jefferson and were actively working Monday night to complete a deal with Minnesota, according to NBA front-office sources.

Sources told that the Jazz and Timberwolves are on the verge of completing a trade that would slot Jefferson’s contract into the $14 million trade exception that Utah created earlier this week in its sign-and-trade deal with Chicago for Carlos Boozer.

But because its trade exception is large enough to absorb Jefferson’s $13 million salary next season, Utah can complete a trade for Jefferson without sending back any players to the Wolves. Sources with knowledge of Minnesota’s thinking said Monday that the Wolves’ main aim in shopping Jefferson in recent weeks has been securing multiple future first-round picks and taking back as little salary if possible.

Via his Twitter account Monday night, Utah CEO Greg Miller wrote: “I just approved a Jazz roster move that I’m very excited about. Planning to share details tomorrow.

Playing in the NBA’s version of purgatory, Jefferson posted 21-and-11 in 2007-08 and 23-and-11 in 2008-09 before suffering a knee injury that required surgery. He finished with 17-and-9 playing alongside Kevin Love in his post-injury 2009-10.

He’s just 25 and one of the league’s true back-to-the-basket big men. Assuming his knees are okay, he will serve as a nice replacement for Carlos Boozer.

There’s an old adage — when one door closes, another opens. Congrats to the Jazz if they can swing this trade. The Mavericks were also very interested in Jefferson.

Revisiting my NBA free agency predictions

Now that the top 10 NBA free agents have made up their minds, let’s check in with my list of ‘sure-to-be-wrong’ predictions and see how I fared.

1. Dwyane Wade will re-sign with the Heat.

2. Chris Bosh will also sign with Miami.

3. LeBron and Carlos Boozer will sign with Chicago.
I didn’t think that LeBron would join what many consider to be ‘Wade’s Team’ and the Bulls gave him the next-best chance to win a championship, especially if Boozer landed there as well. The Bulls were wise to grab Boozer, who is a very nice fit alongside Joakim Noah.

4. Joe Johnson will sign with the Clippers.
I bought into the report that Johnson was in L.A. leading up to free agency and that he had a good relationship with the Clippers’ GM. The Hawks shocked the league when they offered him a six-year max contract and methinks they’ll be regretting it in 2-3 years. Who would have thought that when everything was said and done, that Joe Johnson would get the biggest contract of this free agent class?

5. Stoudemire will land in the Big Apple.
…”the Knicks will be sure to throw gobs of money to save face after pretty much striking out on the other top free agents.” Yeah, that’s pretty much what happened, though the Knicks were proactive and signed Stoudemire before being shunned by LeBron and Wade. And Amare was happy to lap up the dough after the Suns wanted to negotiate a deal that included incentives related to his health.

6. The Knicks will re-sign David Lee.
Donnie Walsh elected to conserve most of his cap space so that the Knicks can be a player in next summer’s free agency, plus the Lee-for-Randolph trade gives the Knicks a good (and cheap) up-and-coming power forward to replace Lee.

7. The Knicks will trade Eddy Curry for Gilbert Arenas.
This could still happen, but it looks like it won’t, at least not now. The Lee trade signals that the Knicks are going to be careful with their cap space, and trading for Arenas would be a huge risk.

8. The Grizzlies will match a max offer for Rudy Gay.
Technically, this prediction wasn’t correct. The Grizzlies once again raised eyebrows around the league by signing Gay to a max contract without letting the market set his price.

9. Dirk Nowitzki and Paul Pierce re-sign with the Mavs and C’s, respectively.
There were pundits out there that actually thought that Pierce could land with the Nets and that Nowitzki would join LeBron in Chicago, but Boston and Dallas made sure these players stayed put.

Overall, I didn’t do too badly, did I?

Bulls land Boozer


Carlos Boozer is the latest domino to fall, agreeing to a five-year, $80 million contract with the Chicago Bulls, a source close to the negotiations told ESPN The Magazine’s Ric Bucher on Wednesday.

Looks like the Bulls read my post-Wade/Bosh offseason blueprint. This is a big contract that averages $16 million per season, but as John Hollinger notes, there’s enough room to sign LeBron outright on the off chance that he utters “the Bulls” tomorrow night.

$80 mil deal has cap figure of $13.8M, which should leave juuuuust enough for LBJ if no cap surprise tonite. S&T drops 1st year to $13.2M.

Bulls fans can’t say the team didn’t react quickly to the Wade/Bosh news. Signing Boozer would seemingly put the Bulls back in the picture for LeBron, but even if it doesn’t, it was the next logical move for a franchise with cap space and a need for low post scoring. He will be a nice fit alongside a defensive, offensively-challenged center like Joakim Noah. He will also fare well in the pick-and-roll with Derrick Rose after running so many with Deron Williams over the years.

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