The self-proclaimed “dawg’’ has left the building.
Less than a week after the Bulls decided to let Kris Dunn get a bite of the free-agent market, the former starting point guard ate on Saturday, verbally agreeing to a two-year, $10 million deal to back-up Trae Young in Atlanta and give the Hawks a much-needed defensive-minded presence.
Give Atlanta the gold star of the day for nabbing Dunn at that price, considering the old Bulls regime felt like Dunn would warrant a price tag of $7-$9 million per year on the open market.
What changed since that mid-season prediction?
There’s the NBA’s lost revenue in the wake of the sour feelings with China, and then of course all the lost gate revenue after Covid-19 sacked the league back in March.
Only four teams were reportedly cap friendly when free agency started, so the price tag on early free agents was bound to go down.
Dunn was an example of that.
At age 26, Dunn was one of the centerpieces of the 2017 offseason deal with Minnesota that sent Jimmy Butler up north, bringing back Zach LaVine, Dunn, and the draft pick that turned out to be Lauri Markkanen.
It quickly looked like both teams would benefit from the deal, as the Timberwolves broke a 13-year playoff drought led by Butler, and the Bulls felt like they had an up-and-coming big three to jumpstart the rebuild with.
Injuries, as well as inconsistencies…