Bulls sign Ex-Piston Rip Hamilton

Updated: December 15, 2011, 10:34 AM ET
ESPNChicago.com

DEERFIELD, Ill. -- Former Detroit Pistons All-Star Rip Hamilton signed with the Chicago Bulls, the team announced Wednesday night.

He is expected to practice with his new team on Thursday, according to a league source.

"He'll have to answer all of (the questions) right now," Derrick Rose said, laughing. "He's someone Chicago's been asking for, a two. I guess, a legit two. He's won a championship and his resume speak for itself."

Hamilton will be formally introduced after Thursday's practice.

"We are excited to welcome a player, and person, with the credentials of Richard Hamilton to our organization," Bulls general manager Gar Forman said in a statement. "Rip has been a winner at every level. His resume speaks for itself, and we are confident that he will be an excellent fit with our team, both on and off the floor."

Bulls fans mired in memories of Keith Bogans aren't the only ones waiting for Hamilton.

"You can sense everybody is excited for him to be here," Luol Deng said.

The Pistons waived Hamilton, 33, on Monday after nine seasons in Detroit.

Terms of the deal were not announced, although the Chicago Tribune reported Hamilton will sign a two-year deal for $10 million, and the third year is a team option with partial guarantees on $5,150,000.

The Bulls have Ronnie Brewer and Kyle Korver at the off-guard, but there was a feeling, especially after last season's Eastern Conference finals, that the team needed a more reliable scorer to pair with Rose.

"You can put him in any situation," Rose said. "Floppy, isolation, he posts up. Being that (skinny), he's got a nice post-up game. He knows how to get fouled and with that weapon, I think that will make the game easier on the whole team."

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau couldn't talk about Hamilton when the media met with him after Wednesday's second practice, but he said it's possible that a new player could suit up for Friday's exhibition opener at Indiana.

"If we sign a player and he's ready to go, just like everybody else, we'll evaluate him once he's here, we'll see what he can do, then we'll move forward," Thibodeau said.

The biggest question mark in adding Hamilton now, compared to say, an in-season trade, would be the timing.

"It's different when you're coming out of offseason and you don't where guys are conditioning-wise," Thibodeau said.

Deng has known Hamilton since the latter's UConn days, when he played with Deng's older brother Ajou Deng. He doesn't think Hamilton will have a tough time fitting in with the Bulls' system.

"Rip is not a player that needs the ball in his hands." Deng said. "He moves without the ball really well, the way we play he's just going to fit in perfectly."

Hamilton was the leading scorer on the Pistons' 2004 championship team and appeared in three All-Star Games.

Hamilton had a falling out with Pistons coach John Kuester, who was fired after last season, and was benched for a large part of a seven-week period. He averaged 14.1 points last season, which was his lowest output since his rookie year.

Information from ESPNChicago.com's Jon Greenberg and Nick Friedell was used in this report.

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