Dwyane Wade with Cavs will represent what might have been for Bulls

Seven years after the Bulls came close to landing LeBron James and Dwyane Wade in free agency to play alongside an ascendant Derrick Rose, the threesome is on the verge of joining forces in Cleveland.

Once Wade clears waivers Wednesday, two sources familiar with his plans said the 12-time All-Star is nearing an agreement with the Cavaliers. The Bulls, who officially placed Wade on waivers Monday, formally agreed to a buyout Sunday night when sources said Wade agreed to forgo $8.5 million of the $23.8 million he stood poised to make.

Wade is eligible to sign a one-year, $2.3 million deal with the Cavaliers.

Wade's imminent arrival will add intrigue to an Oct. 10 exhibition in Cleveland, although veterans may skip such games. Either way, the Bulls ultimately will face the trio of James, Rose and Wade, the ultimate what might have been.

Health plan: Following practice, Zach LaVine looked spirited in playing a non-contact session with former Bull Jannero Pargo, recently hired as the G League's Windy City Bulls assistant coach. Hoiberg said LaVine, who tore his left ACL on Feb. 3, has no restrictions other than contact and spends practice time on the court during teaching segments and in the weight room during scrimmages.

"As far as letting that graft mature, generally from what we understand from our doctors is it takes a full nine months, which would put us in the middle of November before he would be cleared for any type of contact," Hoiberg said.

Another Bull trying to overcome serious injury is Quincy Pondexter, who has missed the entire last two seasons after multiple knee surgeries. He practiced fully.

"It's so cool to see that," said Robin Lopez, a California high school teammate of Pondexter's. "He has been putting in so much work. It's a little bit surreal to be back on the court with him. I'm really relishing that opportunity."

Break it down: Hoiberg spent several minutes after Tuesday's morning practice talking with Doug Collins, recently hired as senior adviser of basketball operations.

"I'm really excited to have Doug with the organization," Hoiberg said. "I've developed a relationship with Doug over the last couple of years. Doug was the first one to text me when we went up 2-0 against Boston in the playoffs and was also the first guy to text me after we lost Rajon (Rondo) to a broken thumb and lost Game 3 and had a tough road ahead. I met with Doug after the season for two hours. Doug talked for one hour and 55 minutes and I talked for five minutes. But Doug is a great person and a great resource."

Layups: As of Tuesday afternoon, Lopez's tweet disparaging President Donald Trump for declining to invite the Warriors to the White House had been retweeted more than 29,000 times and liked more than 105,000. The tweet read: "It's ok @warriors, in a few months @realDonaldTrump probably won't be able to visit the White House either" Asked about the post on Tuesday, Lopez said "it's far and away the most retweeted and liked tweet I've ever had. I'm glad a lot of people felt similarly as I did. It's not too surprising to me. I know there are detractors to it, but I'm glad it meant something to people. I think we have a wonderful, forward-thinking league on so many topics. I'm thankful to be a part of that." . . . Both Lopez and Nikola Mirotic said they were in initially surprised by the Jimmy Butler trade. "But looking deeply at which direction the Bulls are going it was good to me. I knew they were going to play different," Mirotic said. "They said that to me at the end of (last season). I didn't think they were going to trade Jimmy, but it's the way they are looking now — building a young team. And I know they will have cap space next year so they can sign another superstar."

Copyright © 2017, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad
52°