Bulls good, not great with Gasol

Adding the big man helps, but another move will be needed

Updated: July 13, 2014, 2:10 PM ET
By Bradford Doolittle | ESPN Insider

The Chicago Bulls just never seem to get their man. That's a strange observation to make about a franchise with six NBA titles, but it's true when it comes to the history of Chicago's free agent pursuits. It's been that way since Michael Jordan left the team in 1998, and continued Saturday when Carmelo Anthony pledged to return to the New York Knicks.

In Chicago at least, nice guys finish second, and they end up with players like Pau Gasol. The problem with Chicago's recurring Plan B is that while it keeps the Bulls relevant, they remain on the perimeter of the title chase, rather than in the middle of it. To get off that second-tier, the Bulls needed a bold move. If Anthony had chosen the Bulls, that would have certainly qualified. But by rushing into the Gasol acquisition, they leave themselves in the same spot they've been too many times: an also-ran.