NBA Rumors: Western Conference Contender Seen As Suitor For Alex Caruso

A Western Conference contender is reportedly being linked to Chicago Bulls guard Alex Caruso. According to K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago, the Golden State Warriors are rumored to be a potential suitor for the defensive stalwart.

As Johnson noted, the 28-year-old is on a team-friendly contract that the Warriors could easily absorb should they be willing to part ways with some of their future-building assets. Caruso will make $9.4 million next season and could be on the books for $9.9 million in 2024-25, as only $3 million is guaranteed if he is waived.

Caruso's numbers don't jump out the page — he is only averaging 5.6 points, 3.5 assists, and 1.6 steals in nearly 25 minutes per game this season. But his value comes in his defense, IQ, and hustle — attributes that the Warriors value a lot, especially after losing fan-favorite Gary Payton II in the offseason.

After making the playoffs last year, the Bulls have struggled this 2022-23 campaign, barely hanging on to a play-in spot, currently at 10th in the Eastern Conference with a 20-24 record. 

With how their season has played out so far, many expect the Bulls to become sellers ahead of the trade deadline.

The Warriors, meanwhile, have also struggled through the first half of the season as they look to defend their title. 

Golden State has dealt with its fair share of injuries throughout the campaign. But part of the Warriors' struggles is also due to their lack of depth.

Golden State lost some key veterans in the offseason with Payton, Otto Porter Jr., and Nemanja Bjelica leaving in free agency. The organization expected James Wiseman, Jonathan Kuminga, and Moses Moody to make the jump and become quality contributors off the bench. 

But that hasn't happened and the injuries certainly have not helped. With Caruso, they get an experienced veteran who leads by example and is also willing to do the dirty work.

The Warriors could send out a package involving Wiseman, who, at some point during the season, lost his spot in the rotation, and is now dealing with an injury. 

The 2020 No. 2 overall pick still certainly offers a lot of upside. But with what he has shown so far, he may not be ready to help Steph Curry and company compete for another championship.

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