The league's oldest player, Kurt Thomas, won't return for a second season in the Windy City, as the 39-year-old reportedly signed a two-year contract with the size-deficient Trail Blazers.
Although the Bulls' top priority remains acquiring a shooting guard, another concern now becomes finding a veteran big man to provide insurance behind starters Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer, and reserves Taj Gibson and Omer Asik.
The quartet is among the NBA's top frontcourts, but with the injury histories of all four players, more depth is needed; no disrespect to training-camp invite Brian Scalabrine, who will likely make the team, but again play sparingly this season.
Meanwhile, another of the organization's perimeter targets, former Bulls draft pick Jamal Crawford, is reportedly in advanced discussions with the Knicks, another of his former employers, to return to the Big Apple if a sign-and-trade agreement with the Hawks is reached.
Around the league, other moves that could impact the Bulls are being made. Central Division rival Indiana signed free-agent power forward David West to a two-year contract, giving the youthful Pacers some veteran leadership and a low-post scoring presence, albeit one coming off a devastating knee injury.
Of course, one of the biggest stories continues to be the on-again, off-again three-team blockbuster deal involving Hornets All-Star point guard Chris Paul. According to multiple reports, the Lakers pulled out of the slightly-revamped deal--first struck down by the NBA--to acquire Paul, then shipped forward Lamar Odom to the defending-champion Mavericks, a suitor for Magic All-Star center Dwight Howard, for a trade exception and draft considerations, a move that affected both Houston and New Orleans, who continue to find a league-approved swap for their superstar.
Derrick Rose, himself on the verge of signing a long-term contract extension with his hometown Bulls and with no plans to leave his native Chicago, recently opined on the situation.
"I thought that players were able to go wherever they wanted to go, but I guess it's different or they the NBA stopped it," said the league MVP, who was outspoken in his offseason comments about the prolonged lockout and how it affected players. "But I'm not in that organization New Orleans, I don't know that player Paul like that, so I don't have a say-so of what goes on over there."