The Chicago Bulls were all set to add the best player in Europe but decided instead to prioritize their rebuild.
Chicago had a three-year, $30-million agreement to sign Serbian point guard Milos Teodosic, but that deal fell apart once the Bulls flipped Jimmy Butler for prospects near the time of the draft, according to Teodosic's agent.
"We initially had a deal with the Chicago Bulls," Agent Nick Lotsos told Eurohoops. " ... After a few days the GM, Gar Forman, called me. We had agreed to a contract close to $30 million for three years, similar to the one Bogdan Bogdanovic signed in Sacramento.
"My only objection was that I wanted Milos to have the chance to opt out every summer because I believe that he can (get) All-Star money. We were ready to sign and Forman wanted the deal for one more reason. There are many Serbs in Chicago."
The Bulls, however, pivoted in another direction after trading Butler. That signaled that the franchise wasn't interested in competing for the playoffs, therefore they didn't want to add a 30-year-old veteran who could help them win games. Chicago settled instead for the tandem of Kris Dunn and Cameron Payne, which ranks as the least accomplished point guard rotation in the league outside of the New York Knicks.
"I knew that the deal will not be completed after the trade," Lotsos said. "And two days later, Forman called me and explained to me that the team wanted to rebuild, so getting a 30 years old point guard without NBA experience was out of the question."
Even with Chicago dropping out of the picture, Teodosic insisted on his move to the NBA. The Euroleague legend later latched on with the Los Angeles Clippers on a two-year, $12-million agreement, where he is now quickly endearing himself to the fan base with one dazzling dime after another.