Bulls deal Salmons to Bucks, get Warrick, Alexander

The Milwaukee Bucks acquired guard John Salmons from the Chicago

Bulls before Thursday’s NBA trade deadline and sent the expiring

contracts of forwards Hakim Warrick and Joe Alexander to a Bulls

team looking to make a move in free agency this offseason.

Salmons has played in 51 games for Chicago this season,

averaging just over 12 points per game. He is scheduled to make

$5.8 million next season if he doesn’t opt out of his contract.

“He’s a good pro guard,” Bucks coach Scott Skiles said. “He’s

been a solid player for quite a while, and we feel like we still

need to solidify one of our perimeter spots, especially with

Michael (Redd) out. So it made sense.”

The Bucks also obtained the Bulls’ second-round picks in 2011

and 2012, along with the option to switch first-round picks in the

2010 draft – provided that Chicago’s pick isn’t in the top 10.

Milwaukee appeared to be on the verge of a second trade

Thursday. A person with direct knowledge of the deal told The

Associated Press that Milwaukee agreed to a deal with the

Philadelphia 76ers that would bring guard Royal Ivey back to the

Bucks.

The person, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because

the deal has not been completed, said the Bucks would send rookie

guard Jodie Meeks and center Francisco Elson to Philadelphia for

Ivey, center Primoz Brezec and a second-round pick in the 2010

draft.

Ivey played for the Bucks in the 2007-08 season.

The contracts of Warrick and Alexander both expire at the end

of the season, potentially freeing up space for the Bulls to bid

for marquee free agents.

Warrick has played in 48 games for Milwaukee this season,

averaging 10.2 points and 4.4 rebounds per game. Alexander, whom

the Bucks took with the No. 8 overall pick in the 2008 draft, has

struggled to make the jump to the NBA and currently is playing for

the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the NBA Development League.

Salmons missed the Bulls’ game at New York on Wednesday night

and remained at the team hotel — an indication that a deal was

imminent before Thursday afternoon’s NBA trade deadline.

“I’m not at liberty to say,” Bulls coach Vinny Del Negro said

before the game. “I just got a call he’s not going to play. He’s

going to be at the hotel and then I’ll find out more after the game

just like everybody else.”

Warrick said Wednesday night that he was aware of the

possibility of a trade to Chicago but wasn’t dwelling on it.

“If you worry about that, you definitely won’t be able to

concentrate on your performance,” Warrick said.