According to reports, the Chicago Bulls are believed to agree to match the Houston Rockets' offer sheet on center Omer Asik, worth 24.1 million over three years.
I can predict, from talking to numerous sources, that every single offer sheet except Landry Fields' will be matched. Chris Sheridan (@sheridanhoops) July 11, 2012
Beginning at 12:01 this morning, teams were allowed to begin matching offer sheets on restricted free agents, and have three days to do so.
Asik averaged 3.1 points, 5.3 rebounds and 1.0 blocks in 15 minutes per game last season, acting as a defensive stalwart on the Bulls second unit.
Along with the impending signing of shooting guard Kirk Hinrich, a deal worth 6 million over two years, the Bulls will be over the luxury tax for the 2012-2013 season if they match Asik's offer from Houston. The NBA announced Tuesday that this season's luxury tax will be set at 70.037 million, the same as last season. The 10 Bulls already under contract next season will be paid approximately 72 million next year.
Small forward Kyle Korver's 5 million contract will be next up for discussion within the Bulls' brass, and the team is likely to address the shooting guard position in free agency, as well.
The "poison pill" Houston attempted to implement to keep the Bulls from matching their offer, a pay raise to 14 million in his third season, means the Bulls will owe Derrick Rose, Carlos Boozer, Joakim Noah and Asik 60.9 million in 2014-15. Luol Deng will be an unrestricted free agent that year, which could mean Boozer could be an amnesty candidate next season, or potentially this off-season, to make room for Deng.
Boozer is owed 47.1 million over the next three seasons, and under the NBA's Amnesty clause a team may absolve one current contract and have it not count against their salary cap.