Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

The Pelicans and Bulls have reached an agreement in principle on a trade that will send forward Nikola Mirotic to New Orleans, reports ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski (Twitter link).

The two teams appeared to be on the verge of a trade earlier this week, but hit a roadblock in the form of Mirotic’s $12.5MM team option for 2018/19. The veteran forward, who has veto rights unless that option is exercised, wanted New Orleans to pick it up, but the Pelicans were initially unwilling to do so, due to concerns about their ability to retain Mirotic and re-sign DeMarcus Cousins without going into luxury tax territory.

The Pelicans are now ready to guarantee that $12.5MM salary for next season, which clinched the deal, per Wojnarowski (via Twitter). According to Woj, Omer Asik and a future first-round pick are headed to Chicago, as was the case in the initial agreement. New Orleans will have to include one more player to stay under a hard cap, so Tony Allen will also head to Chicago, according to Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports (Twitter link). Allen will likely be waived by the Bulls, Woj tweets.

Meanwhile, the Bulls will also be sending the second-round pick they acquired from the Pelicans in September’s Quincy Pondexter trade back to New Orleans, according to K.C. Johnson of The Chicago Tribune (Twitter link). The first-rounder the Bulls are getting in the deal will be the Pelicans’ 2018 first-rounder, and it will have “minimal” protections, tweets Wojnarowski. Woj adds that there will be a pick-swapping option for second-rounders in the 2021 draft, though it remains unclear which team will have that option.

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This article first appeared on Hoops Rumors and was syndicated with permission.

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