Having spent all but two of his 11-year career with the Chicago Bulls, shooting guard Kirk Hinrich is returning to Chicago again for at least one more season. The wily veteran was an unrestricted free agent, and had reportedly gained interest from the Charlotte Hornets and Utah Jazz, but an agreement was struck with Chicago before anything serious festered. Terms and conditions of the deal are not known at the moment, but Hinrich’s last contract with Chicago was worth $8 million over two seasons.
One would think Hinrich’s deal would be close to the league minimum, if not the league minimum, but that’d be dependent on whether the contract is multiple years or not. Given Hinrich generated interest with only two other known teams, the tendency to believe the deal will be one year and on or close to the veteran minimum is likely the accurate inclination.
As a Bull-lifer, Hinrich has long identified with blue-collar Chicagoians for his feisty and in-your-shorts tenacity on defense. That being said, Hinrich playing any role larger than a backup is a scary proposition. But, injuries and a depleted frontcourt forced Hinrich to play more minutes and start more games than originally planned last season.
Having played below an average of 25 minutes a game only once in his career, an injury riddled year in Atlanta, a decrease in Hinrich’s minutes might be necessary. His shooting has been pretty suspect over the past two seasons, and he’s always tried to dribble the air out of the rock. Bottom line: if Kirk Hinrich is starting a playoff game in 2014-2015 something went terribly wrong. As a backup, he’s serviceable and best relegated to just that.
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