The Chicago Bulls have made some big changes this summer as they try to beef up their roster and make a run at the Eastern Conference crown.
While adding players like Pau Gasol and Nikola Mirotic, there was one thing they definitely didn't want to change: Kirk Hinrich.
After coming to agreement with Hinrich earlier this summer, the Bulls officially announced the signing on Monday. It's a two-year deal that starts at $2.7 million next season and includes a player option for the second season, according to a person with knowledge of the contract. The person requested anonymity because the Bulls do not publicly comment on contract details.
''Kirk has always been a big part of creating the professional culture we want day in, day out surrounding our club,'' Bulls GM Gar Forman said. ''He helps our team in so many ways and Kirk had other opportunities elsewhere, but we are very happy he chose to remain in a Bulls uniform.''
Hinrich has spent nine of his 11 seasons with the Bulls, a dependable veteran who can play solid defense in Tom Thibodeau's demanding system and fill in capably when starters go down. For a team that has seen star Derrick Rose miss most of the last two years with knee injuries, that's a valuable role to fill.
Hinrich averaged 9.1 points and 3.9 assists in 73 games last season.
The Bulls also signed second-round draft pick Cameron Bairstow, who was taken with the 49th overall pick. The 6-foot-9 Australian forward averaged 9.2 points and 4.8 rebounds in just under 20 minutes per game for New Mexico in college.