KC Johnson: Mark Bartelstein spent hours at the Bulls’ practice facility on Monday, trying to get a deal done in face-to-face negotiations with Bulls GM Gar Forman. “We had very positive talks,” Bartelstein said. “These are hard extensions to get done.”
KC Johnson: Deadline for Bobby Portis extension is 5 pm Central. Sides are talking. In 2012, Portis’ agent negotiated extension for Taj Gibson with Bulls management minutes before deadline. Will history repeat?
A big man very much in the Bulls’ plans is Bobby Portis. Sources said the Bulls recently made a multiyear offer to Portis, who has until the day before the 2018-19 season begins to sign an extension off his rookie-scale contract or he’ll be a restricted free agent. Talks are expected to continue.
The Bobby Portis story has evolved from the preseason, where he put the punch in punchline following his incident with Nikola Mirotic and many felt he shouldn’t have played another game in a Bulls uniform. [...] Those good graces may have the Bulls truly evaluating where Portis fits long-term, and it could work to the benefit of both sides as they could engage in contract extension talks this summer before Portis is scheduled to hit restricted free agency, if the two sides don't reach a deal this October.
A front office source tells NBCSportsChicago.com a deal for Portis “will be discussed” this summer, as Portis has had a breakout third season, averaging 13.2 points and 6.5 rebounds. In the 11 games since the Bulls traded Mirotic to New Orleans, Portis’ tangible production has matched his efficiency, as he’s averaged 17.1 points and 7.4 rebounds while shooting 47 percent and 39 percent from 3-point range.
Over 20 teams reached out to the Bulls with the thought to acquire him, sources told NBCSportsChicago.com in October when Mirotic issued his “Portis or me” ultimatum during his recovery from a concussion and facial injuries.
It would go against Bulls precedent, as only Derrick Rose received a contract extension before going into restricted free agency, but Portis will be open to contract talks this summer, according to sources.
January 22, 2021 | 3:55 am EST Update
Washington is expected to check in on Len if he does clear waivers, according to someone familiar with their plans. It is unclear how strong their interest would be, as they are exploring several options.
Your name has popped up in trade rumors a bit over the last year. Do you keep up with trade rumors or do you try to block them out? Kendrick Nunn: “I pretty much block them out unless my agent contacts and tells me that there’s a possibility that I could get traded. Anything on social media and stuff, obviously I’m on there so it comes up and I read it, but I try to just ignore it and stick to what my team tells me.”
Immediately after the game he went on TNT and had to hear Shaq, who said earlier in the night that Mitchell was just a scorer, say: “I said tonight that you are one of my favorite players but you don’t have what it takes to get to the next level. I said it on purpose because I wanted you to hear it. What do you have to say about that?” What did Mitchell have to say? “Aight.”
Ben Anderson: Donovan Mitchell on the comments from Shaq and Barkley on @NBAonTNT . “I hate to take a win like this and make it about what they said about me. Look at how we played, look at how we guarded. I’m happy.”
Eric Walden: Donovan Mitchell, on the TNT commentary: “We’ve won seven in a row. I hate to take a win like this and make it about me. … I’m here to play basketball and to win and to be the best teammate I can be. If they don’t like it, they don’t like it.”
Tony Jones: Rudy Gobert on the TNT crew and comments: “At the end of the day, whatever they want to call us, if we keep winning games, they will have to watch us anyway. Hopefully they have to watch us until July. And then they can call us whatever they want.”
Eric Walden: Mike Conley, on Shaq’s comments about Donovan Mitchell: “I’ve been a big fan of Don’s and seeing the way he’s grown, even before he was here. I don’t know how you can make a statement like that regarding his progress at such a young age. He’s gotten better every year.”