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Tag:Andres Nocioni
Posted on: March 13, 2010 3:54 pm
 

I am awake during my worst nightmare...

         The Bulls are falling apart. A couple weeks after being one of the hottest teams in the NBA the Bulls have done a 180 and are now out of the top 8 in the east. They were for a mere moment in the 5th seed while riding a strong month of February then the wheels fell off. Joakim Noah got hurt and now Luol Deng and Taj Gibson are battling injuries of their own. Add to this now an injury to Rose. If the Bulls cannot put at least a healthy Deng and Noah on the floor then the Bulls will miss the playoffs. In reality however it may take Noah returning to fix this mess. The problem is that Noah will most likely return to late in the season, if at all, to get the Bulls into the playoffs. What does all this mean and why is this more then just a short-term nightmare? Let us take a look.

        What we are learning is that Derrick Rose's style of play could have hit often sitting on the bench hurt. Driving on Dwight Howard is a big risk for a point guard. Rose has now been hurt twice by this decision and one has to wonder if Rose needs o chill out a bit when driving to the bucket. I understand it is a huge part of his game and that the Bulls are in a bad spot and he needs to carry them, but in the longterm he needs to make smarter decisions and preserve himself for the long haul. The Bulls might have a superstar on their hands that spends 10-20 games a season injured much like Dwyane Wade.
          Joakim Noah's foot issue might even be the worst of all as it will always be there waiting to strike and take noah out. Remember Andres Nocioni before he had the same foot issue? Remember him afterwards? Scary. Noah is a big part of the Bulls future and this team cannot defend the paint at all without him.
          The nightmare part of this whole losing streak is the fact that it looks like there is a real chance the Bulls will miss the playoffs after most believed them a lock to make the playoffs. Here is my real question. Will a superstar like LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, or Chris Bosh sign with a team that cannot even make the playoffs? I do not think the Bulls will sign any of those three without making the playoffs. They might not even be able to attract Amare, Boozer, Johnson, or Lee. Then what? If Miami make the playoffs then Wade will resign in hopes of getting Bosh to sign as well.
          The bottomline is that the Bulls are on the worst path possible heading int the offseason. I really hope they can turn things arounf and make a push back into the playoffs.
Posted on: August 15, 2009 2:26 pm
 

The > then < then Game. 1st session

     Well it is a slow time again on these NBA boards so I came up with a fun idea. I call it the greater then, less then game. Simply compare two seperate players or teams or circumstances and deside which is greater and lesser. You see this in play all the time when a poster posts Kobe>Lebron or LeBron>Kobe and I am sure we will see a lot of these type of replies. I really think it would be nice to see some funny and well thought out ideas though. So lets see what you can come up with and here are a few to get things started.

Lakers wins this season>Knicks and Rockets' combined wins.

Vince Carter's effect on Magic>Hedo's effect on Raptors.

Joakim Noah's rebound average this season>Kevin Love's.

Shaq's FT% this season>Shaq's FG% this season. (it will be only the second time it has happened in his career.LOL)

Andres Nocioni's and Bobby Jackson's combined technical fouls>Kings total wins.

Attendance at local little league game>Attendance at Grizzlies home game.

Chances of being eaten by a shark while being struck by lightning>Baron Davis shooting over .400 from the floor.

Bring them on!



 
Posted on: May 5, 2009 11:25 pm
 

A Season in Review: Chicago Bulls.

  Before the season even began this year I wrote a blog that was part a preview and a part my predictions for the Bulls season. I was off a bit in some areas and pretty close in others. I thought it would be a fun way to look back at the season by looking back at what I thought the season was going to look like and then break it all down. So if you are a Bulls fan or just interested in the NBA in general, please grab something to drink and have a seat because this may take awhile. I will put quotes around my original blog ideas and then break them down below in bold. Feel free to leave a reply.

 

“The Helm: Preview

John Paxson is known now for taking a few risks. When he first took over I thought he was going to be very conservative and in many ways he is, but he seems to pull a fast one every year or so. Signing Ben Wallace, firing Scott Skiles, and trading Tyson Chandler to name a few. This summer he shocked me and I can only imagine all Bulls fans by hiring Vinny Del Negro as the head coach. I really was hoping for Avery Johnson. Others really wanted Rick Carlisle or Mike D'Antoni. In the end Paxson went a different route. 

At first glance Vinny seems a bad choice. A young team with some locker room issues really seemed to me to need a veteran coach to keep things in order. What really makes this hiring work is the additions of Del Harris and Bernie Bickerstaff. Del Negro will have two former NBA head coaches on the bench to field questions and concerns too. I am sure that Vinny will want to run a faster pace offense then we have seen the Bulls run in a long time. This will really help many of the Buls players shine. I love the idea of just about every player on the roster in an up tempo style of basketball. Tyrus, Gordon, Thabo, and Deng come to mind right away, but Kirk and the other will do quite well also.”

 

I think I got this one right for the most part. Vinny Del Negro has been far from perfect and with a better coach like the ones I mention I think the Bulls might have made it past the Celtics in the Playoffs.

 

“The Helm: Prediction

I think Vinny will hold his own and his fast paced game will push the Bulls into the playoffs. Del Negro and his wise staff will be able to get the best out of the Bulls young players and the Vinny Del Negro hire will end up making Paxson look smart.”

 

I was wrong on this one. The Bulls did play a bit faster but nothing like I thought and Vinny and his staff were far from wise. They were what they were, rookies. John Paxson in the end does not look smart or a fool. Vinny has been just OK and the Bulls did make it to the playoffs, though that had more to do with the Kings trade then anything.

 

“The Roster:

I will write my preview and predictions for each impact player below. I am not going to write about players that I do not think will get enough playing time to make much of a difference. So, let us begin.

The Starters:

   Kirk Hinrich

“Preview: Kirk will be the starter at PG until Rose proves he is the better player. I do not see that happening this year. Kirk will return to his old scrappy self and establish himself as the best all around guard on the Bulls. Let us not forget how good Kirk was but a season ago. He was a top 10 PG without question and I think he has a lot to prove. His hard-nosed defense will keep him on the floor for long stretches and at the end of the game he will run the show. I know this may not be what Bulls fans want to hear. I also want to see Rose turn into a top Pg in the NBA, but it will take time, and frankly the Bulls have it. I also do not see the Bulls trading Kirk this season unless I am way off base and Derrick turns into a real stud and Hinrich's services are no longer needed.

Predictions: 12 ppg, 3 rpg, 6.5 apg, 1.4 spg, FG% .420”

 

This has to be my biggest bust as far as predictions go. I really thought that Rose was going to have growing pains like Jay Williams did for us a few years ago. I was dead wrong. Derrick Rose proved to be our starter from day one and there was no looking back. Kirk's averages fell even more then I thought. He ended this season averaging 9.9ppg, 2.4rpg, 3.9apg, 1.3spg, .437FG%.

 

   Larry Hughes

“Preview: Larry has some competition at the SG spot with Gordon resigning and Thabo getting better every day. The thing that gets Hughes the nod is his size and defense. Gordon is by far the better shooter, but Hughes will match-up better with other teams starters. I could see Larry lose his starting job to Thabo if Larry takes so many silly shots and does not play team basketball. Thabo is a younger and maybe better version of Hughes anyways. But when the season starts I feel that Larry will be in the starting lineup. He should do quite well in an up tempo game and if he plays his cards right he could have a real nice season.

Predictions: 13.5 ppg, 3 rpg, 3apg, 1.5 spg, FG% .405”

 

Larry did start for the Bulls for a while until he kept getting hurt and he really never panned out. Infact Larry was a cancer to this young team and did little but complain about playing time. Thanks Cleveland! The funniest part of this prediction was how much love I was giving Thabo. He really never worked out for us even though he had some nice skills. In the end Hughes averaged 11.6ppg, 2.9rpg, 2.2apg, 1.3 spg. .402FG%. I was not too far off on his stats.

 

   Luol Deng

“Preview: I think might be the year for Luol. He finally got his money, so there should be no distactions. We will find out this season what Deng is all about. Will he become complacent now that he has his contract, or will he take a step forward and become the team leader and All-star that he could be? That is a real hard question to answer these days with players striving more often towards the money rather then team success. However Luol has not shown signs of being a head case, so I gather that he will take a step forward this season. With so many shooters on the Bulls and some decent inside threats like Gooden and Thomas, I think the floor will open up a little more for him. I hope he drives it to the hole more and plays with his back to the basket every so often. When Deng decides to drive he often scores or draws a foul. I think he will become a better all around player and flirt with becoming the first Bulls Allstar since Jordan and Pippen left.

Prediction: 19.5 ppg, 7 rpg, 2.5 apg, 1.0 spg, FG% .485”

 

Well Luol ended up only playing 49 games this season and we really could have used him down the stretch. It was not the year for Deng like I thought it would be. My key statement is the one were I ask if Loul is going to be complacent or not. I thought he would shine with his new contract but I guess I was far off. I saw him as an All-star and I still think he could be if he got in the gym and got into shape. I think if healthy he would play very well with Derrick Rose. Deng could be the slasher and shooter the Bulls need to reach the next level. This season he averaged 14.1ppg, 6.0rpg, 1.9apg, 1.2spg, .448FG%.

 

   Drew Gooden

“Preview: This is were I think things will get very interesting. Drew showed last season that he is a low post threat. He may not be the star caliber PF that most teams seem to need to go to the Finals, but he is very solid. I think with a training camp and more time with the Bulls he will only get better and more consistent. He will exploit weaker PFs all day long and will continue to struggle with faster and longer power forwards in the league. In the end Drew is a match-up guy. He can put up huge numbers when an opposing team cannot match his strength and that is what we will see all season long. Also, if Tyrus steps it up and gets his head on straight he could prove to be a better starter then Gooden by seasons end. I just do not think Thomas has the basketball IQ to be starter right now.

Prediction: 12 ppg, 8.5 rpg, 1.0 bpg, FG% .470”

 

I thought Drew was a solid player for us this season and my preview was right on. Drew did look great some nights but when he had to play against a good power forward he looked lost. In the end he averaged better then I thought at 13.1ppg, 8.6rpg, .4bpg, .457FG%.

 

   Joakim Noah

“Preview: I think that Noah is never going to be a scoring Center in the NBA. I know that that is not a shocker to most of you, but it must be said right up front. Noah is a very smart player who will play hard on both ends. He is and will become an even better passer out of the post witch will contribute to many open looks. I think in the end Noah is a player that does make everyone else on the floor better. His energy will lead the Bulls in down times and his ferociousness will turn things around in close games. He is a winner and he will become more and more a vocal leader on the Bulls. He is much in the likeness of Tyson Chandler only a little smarter but less athletic. All in all he will have a pretty good season and should be the starter throughout the season.

Prediction: 7 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 1.5 bpg, 1.0 spg, FG% .500”

 

I was close on this one as well. Noah has turned out to be all the things I said he would be and I was very close on my predictions for his stats. 6.7ppg, 7.6rpg, 1.4bpg, .556FG%.

 

The Bench:

   Ben Gordon

“Preview: The real question is how much playing time will Ben get? I think Vinny will find that Gordon can take over a game and create his own shot, and for that reason Ben will see a lot of minutes off the bench. Gordon really is a 6th man no matter what he feels. He is built to take advantage of second-string players from the other team. He creates a lot of problems for opposing team's coaches. I really would have liked to see him sign the $58 mil. Contract over 6 years that is reported that he was offered. In any case he is playing for a contract this season and that could be good and bad. If he looks to build up his stats and not play team ball then he could be a thorn in our sides. Vinny and staff will have their hands full trying to keep Gordon in a team mindset. I hope Vinny has the guts to just bench Gordon, even if it hurts the Bulls this season, if it becomes apparent he is not playing to win. Regardless, I think Ben will see a lot of action this season but maybe not as much as in past seasons. I think Thabo could eat up some of his minutes so I really do not think he will put up the numbers that he wishes he could.

Prediction: 17 ppg, 3 rpg, 3 apg, 1.0 spg, FG% .430”

 

 

Well I was wrong and right with this prediction. Ben Gordon in the long run might have disturbed the flow of the offense but he did contribute much more then I thought he would. Gordon has acted like a professional and has not caused any problems on the team. I Just think he is not the right mix with Rose. I think we would be better served with a player who knew they were just a jump shooter. Here are his season numbers. I was a bit off on his scoring. 20.7ppg, 3.5rpg, 3.4 apg, .9spg, .455FG%.

 

  Derrick Rose

“Preview: Rose will be affective right away, but he will not be ready to take the helm from Kirk Hinrich. Derrick reminds me very much of Jay Williams. Jay was a second overall pick behind Yao Ming and had a bumpy rookie season. Rose will have much of the same thing in his rookie season. I am sure we will witness many great passes and plays at his hand, but we will also see a lot of rookie mistakes. He is lucky that Hinrich is still around. It takes some pressure off of him to lead right away. He can learn a lot from Kirk and I like this one two punch very much. I am also excited to see him come off the bench with Gordon and Tyrus. There will be some highlights for sure with those guys all on the floor together. I look forward to watching him grow, and If I am wrong and he does become a starter this season then us Bulls fans should be very happy.

Predictions: 8.5 ppg, 4.5 apg, 1.5 rpg, 0.5 spg, FG% .410”

 

 

Wow, was I wrong here. Rose was a stud from day one and was as consistent as anyone in the NBA. We knew what he was going to give us every night. There were maybe a handful of games that he was off and scored in single digits. Comparing him to Jay Williams seems really funny to me now. Look at my crappy predictions for his stats. lol. Here is how he ended the season. 16.8ppg, 6.3apg, 3.9rpg, .8spg, .475FG%. I even could not make up my mind on him or Michael Beasley. Silly.

 

   Thabo Sefolosha

“Preview: It is to bad for Thabo that Gordon resigned. I really felt that Thabo would have had a breakout season with enough playing time. Now he is forced back into last season’s role as the odd man out. He could see minutes at small forward and if Nocioni misses time with an injury then he could be a viable back up for Luol Deng. I think the fast passed game that Vinny will most likely run will suit Thabo very well. Thabo will also be used for certain match-ups were his size and defense are really needed. I cannot stress it enough how much I like Thabo's game, but he will not be afforded the opportunity to make a real impact.

Predictions: 6.5 ppg, 3.5 rpg, 2.0 apg, 1.0 spg, FG% .430”

 

Man, someone needed to tell me to get a room with this guy. I was in love. I must have been crazy too. Thabo regressed with the Bulls this season before being traded. He was a good defender but everything else was crap. He loved to turn the ball over and took bad shots. He just looked lost. Here were his stats. 5.9ppg 3.7rpg, 1.7apg, 1.14spg, .426FG%. I was close on the stats but he really was just inconsistent. He would have a great game and then not score for 4 games in a row. Crazy.

 

   Andres Nocioni

“Preview: Nocioni is my favorite player simply because he plays so hard and with so much passion. The problem is he is showing signs that he may be a little injury prone. I think his hard-nose style of ball has taken a toll on his body. If healthy, Andres is a great SF, but he is relying too much on an outside game. I am sure his injuries have forced him to alter his game, but he was at his best when defenders were not sure if he was going to drive hard or take the jump shot. Sadly, I feel Nocioni will not return to his old self anytime soon. With that being said, he is still one of the best back-up small forwards in the league and he will win a few games for us with his great 3-point shooting.

Predictions: 11 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 1.0 apg, FG% .435”

 

I think I was right on with this one. Nocioni became a shooter and he stopped driving and it hurt his game.  I was also very sad to see him go. His stats were. 11.4ppg, 4.8rpg, 1.3apg, .427FG%. I was close on his stats as well.

 

   Tyrus Thomas

“Preview: I think we will see Tyrus take a small step forward this season. He could end up a starter by seasons end, but I am not certain he will stay out of foul trouble enough to stay of the floor for long stretches. By far Thomas is the hardest player to wrap my mind around. On one hand he is an athletic freak with loads of talent, but on the other hand he seems lost on the floor and not comfortable with the ball in his hand and his back to the basket. This is a do or die season for him in many ways. He needs to prove that he can use his talent and become a star power forward or he may solidify himself as a bust. Reports have it that he has packed on some muscle; hopefully he has worked out his brain as well. He should focus on defense, because at the very least he could become a top defender in the NBA.

Predictions: 9 ppg, 6 rpg, 1 apg, 1.5 bpg, FG% .430”

 

I think I did a good job on previewing and predicting for Tyrus. Funny thing is is I could make these same comments about him going into next season. Stats. 10.8ppg, 6.4rpg, 1.0apg, 1.9bpg, .451FG%. In the end Thomas did better then I thought he would and I think he could still prove to be a good starting power forward in this league.

 

   Aaron Gray

“Preview: Word on the street is that Aaron Grey is in shape. If that is the case and his conditioning is in check then Grey could be a real darkhorse on this team. He has showed us already that he can play well in the post. Now if he can keep his energy level up and stay on the floor then he could prove to be a real great back-up Center. I might even go so far as to say that he could challenge Noah for a starting job. That may be a stretch, but a low-post scorer with real size is very rare these days. Worse case Aaron will be better then last season and good help off the bench.

Predictions: 7ppg, 3.5 rpg, FG% .510”

 

Another player I had high hopes for. The rumor about Aaron being in shape was a total lie. He was fatter then ever. I still contend that he is worth a roster spot because he does has a post game even thought he makes Brad Miller look like Rajon Rondo when it comes to speed. His stats were as follows. 3.5ppg, 3.9rpg, .485FG%. Get in the gym fatty!

 

Awards:

“Most Improved Player: Tyrus Thomas. I think he has to get better. His talent level is way too high for him not to get better, plus he should see quite a bit of playing time.”

 

While Tyrus did shine at moments what stands out to me is that he was not on the floor at the end of games and Joakim Noah was. I would have to now give this award to Noah.

 

 

“Welcome Back Award: Kirk Hinrich. I think Hinrich will return to his old form and have a nice season.”

 

I was wrong with this award and would now have to give it to a more fitting player, Brad Miller. It was nice to see him in a Bulls uniform again.

 

 

“Defensive Player Award: Hinrich/Thomas. Hinrich will when unless Tyrus turns it up and starts grabbing rebounds and swatting away shots.”

 

It is har to argue this one. Hinrich played great defense on Paul Pierce in the playoffs and against shooting guards all season long and Tyrus became a force down low blocking a ton of shots.

 

 

“MVP: Luol Deng. He should have a great season, and the there is no reason that he should not take a step forward and capture an Allstar appearance”.

 

Wow, was I off here. Just about anyone on the roster deserves this award ahead of Deng. Of course I have to give it to the rookie of the year Derrick Rose even though Ben Gordon won us a lot of games.

 

Conclusion:

“OK. So you have read a lot so far I know, but I have to give my final Predictions for the season. I really hope you enjoyed the read and feel free to reply or give your own predictions or thoughts. Thanks.

2008-09 Season Record: 50-32. I think the Bulls will shock many and have a great season. There is no reason why the Bulls cannot be a top 4 team in the East. I think the Bulls will end up with the 5th seed in the playoffs and face the 76ers in the first round and win the series in six. They will then go on to lose against the Celtics in five. That would be a great season in my eyes. Maybe I am a homer, but I really think last season was a glitch and I think the Bulls can pick up were they left of in the 2006-07 season. I will cross my fingers.”

 

 

Well I was 9 games off on my predction for season record which is not that great. I did really think the Bulls would turn things around and be more like the Bulls of two years ago who won 49 games and swept the Heat in the playoffs, but I was wrong and John Paxson made one hell of a trade to fix this team. I was correct in saying we would lose to the Celtics but we never did make it to the second round.

Well I do hope you enjoyed my critique on my self and I will be writing some more blogs on offseason ideas and Roster moves, so stay tuned.
Posted on: May 5, 2009 10:42 pm
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Posted on: February 18, 2009 8:53 pm
 

Not Sexy, but Smart.

Well the Bulls finally pulled the trigger on a trade today. Let us take a look at it. The meat of the trade is that the Bulls will land veteran center Brad Miller and young stud John Salmons and the Kings will get Andres Nocioni, Drew Gooden, and Cedric Simmons. I for one think the Bulls made a really nice and quite move here and here are my thoughts as to why:

  1. John Salmons is a starter and can play both shooting guard and small forward. He is a good defender and can score well and has size for a SG. Something we have really needed. Sorry, Larry Hughes is a joke. Sure he can defend but he jacks up crazy shots and I hope the Bulls move him by tommorow or this summer. Salmon's contract is smaller then Nocioni's and for two less years. Andres Nocioni has just become a jump shooter the last two seasons. I loved him early on with the Bulls and part of me hates to see him go but this was a good trade. Salmons is clearly better then Nocioni.
  2. Brad Miller is the best big we have had since, well Brad Miller. I always have loved his game, and while he is getting older and his game is slowing I thing he is a great locker room player and a good leader. He should be able to teach Joakim Noah and Aaron Gray a few tricks. His contract also is up by the summer of 2010. Drew Gooden had some flashes were he did look really good, but he is soft and plays no defense. Brad Miller is an OK defender and a banger down low. Miller is also a great passer for a bigman and he knows how to set a pick and do all the little things.
  3. Ben Gordon in my mind is gone after the season for sure now. I would much rather have John Salmons starting for now and save some more money for later signings. In my mind Larry hughes needs to be moved soon and not later.
  4. With Larry and Gordon gone this offseason the Bulls should draft a shooting guard to back up Salmons or a Small Forward to back up Deng and then just hold tight through next season. I think the Bulls are a playoff team now. Not a high seed team, but I think they should make the playoffs this season and next.

Roster going into next season:

Pretty solid. If we can pick up a big like Chris Bosh in 2010 then we are set. We also would be well served with Dwyane Wade as well. Let us see what Tyrus Thomas can do now.

Posted on: January 15, 2009 12:55 pm
 

Could the Bulls be Back?

     Well, I guess I would be called a fool to think that the Bulls are back after just one game, but as a fan you have to be happy with what you saw from Kirk Hinrich and Luol Deng last night. Kirk really could thrive as a sixth man and I really hope that Luol is healthy and can keep playing at the level he did last night. We will find out for sure tonight what the bulls are made of as they face the Cavaliers. I can not see us winning, but this game could be used as a measuring tool to see were we are as a team. With a healthy squad will we overcome a back to back game against one of the top teams in the league and keep it close? or will we just get it handed to us?

     If the Bulls can stay within 10-12 points throughout the game tonight and make the Cavs work for a win then I guess we should be happy with that. If they get killed and lose by 15+ points and trail by 20+ points at any point then we know are team has a way to go before they can make a playoff push.

     Kirk hinrich really looked much better then i thought he would. He must have had the right amount of time to heal and it is nice to see that he did not rush back into it. 12 points, 6 assists, and 5 rebounds in 33 minutes is about what i would expect from him as a starting PG. Off the bench he is a huge asset.

     Luol Deng looked like the player we have seen in the past with 16 points and a wopping 14 rebounds. He was a machine. To bad he has been so upand down this season, now I just expect him to have 3-4 bad game in a row now. That just seems like the pattern followed by another injury. Knock on wood. He did a nice job of playing in the paint with Drew Gooden missing yet another game due to a injury. I am shocked we won this game with out Gooden.

     Drew Gooden has been our only real consistant inside guy but it is too bad that his body is so inconsistant. If he could stay healthy and play every game 35+ minutes then I bet the Bulls would have a few more wins this season and could be .500 right now. Tyrus Thomas is like that girl in high school who always would flirt with everyone but never date. Yes, he is a big tease. Some nights we all just wonder who is this superstar on our team and why does Vinny not play him 48 minutes a night and then other nights we are screaming at the T.V. for Vinny to bring Andres Nocioni back in. I am not sure if Thomas will ever be a star in the NBA and that is a shame because he is a beast of an athlete.

     Well I can always cure the blues by talking about Derrick Rose a bit. Rose took over last night and he needs to do that a little more often. He is a good shooter and a great scorer, so he needs to take over if he sees his team is having a rough shooting night. 25 points and 10 rebounds could very well be Rose's averages in a few years and I do not think anyone would be shocked by it either. He needs to keep puting together good games like this, but more importantly he needs to get the Bulls some more wins and into the playoffs if he is going to win the Rookie of the Year Award. O.J. Mayo and Rose are neck and neck and if Rose cant get the Bulls into the playoffs then he may very well be sharing the award with Mayo or may not get it at all.

I do not want to really talk about the Thunder game and I am sure nobody else does either. I did however pick the thunder to beat us last week and for us to win our other two games. In my heart I was half joking that we would lose, but it still hurts to lose to a team that bad. I predict that we will lose tonight to the Cavaliers. Big stretch I know. Being that it is a back to back game I think we will really struggle. I see a blow-out. Things do not get any better for the Bulls as we face the Spurs on Saturday. Another loss for sure. Our only hope is for Drew to play well and our shots to go in. I just do not see us winning.

Till next time. Go Bulls!

Posted on: January 5, 2009 4:18 pm
 

The Bulls Report

     If the Bulls are ever going to win three games in a row this season now would be the time to try. With Games against the Kings, the Wizards, and the Thunder one would think the Bulls could do it. Others may point at the loss the the Timberwolves at home and say that the Bulls are as good as done. With Kirk Hinrich still out and Drew Gooden as well the Bulls look like a team against the ropes and to be honest I do not think the Bulls will win three in a row this season. If that happens it will be late in the season with a healthy team. Let's look at this woeful team and see what sense we can make of it.

     Well, with Drew Gooden not playing the Bulls have an even larger hole down low and teams are able to score at will and the Bulls, on the other end of the floor, can not get an inside out game at all. Joakim Noah had a very nice game against the Magic but most of those points came late and he has been far from consistant the rest of the year. I think it is safe to say that Noah will never be a good starting Center in the NBA. He is a energy guy off the bench at best. He plays hustle ball, but hustle ball will only get you so far.

     The Bulls are just a way different team without Drew Gooden. It is funny just how important this guy is to us if we want to win. With Gooden in the lineup I always felt we had a chance against most teams, but without him I am starting to think will can not win. John Paxson needs to really start looking at making a move here or this season is going to be a waste. I still think the a move could be made for Chris Kaman. The Clippers are a bust and have really no chance at making the playoffs. Maybe Larry Hughes or Kirk Hinrich could be packaged with Joakim Noah and a second rounder for Kaman. The Clippers were looking to trade Kaman for Jason Richardson earlier this season. I just hate to see a season slip away. Also, Paxson could look at Bogut from the Bucks. Something needs to give and there is really no reason not to make a move now.

     To make matters worse Derrick Rose really looks as if he is hitting the rookie wall. His consistency seems to be lost and as fans we are left to wonder just what Rose we will see from game to game. Do not get me wrong, I love Derrick Rose, but he is not playing at the same level now as he was at the begining of the season. Here are his point totals for the last 6 games: 10, 27, 21, 11, 3, and 22. The Bulls need to find a way to rest him more, but that seems unlikely with Kirk Hinrich still out. I wish Thabo Sefolosha would start playing the way I invisioned him playing before the season began. I really thought that Thabo would be a factor this season. His defense has not even been that great.

     Besides Rose being a smart pick in the draft the only other real bright spot is the play of Ben Gordon which makes us all have to ask the question, "Why did we not sign him?". Well many thought that Luol Deng was the better player of the two and Deng could still prove to be better, but man, it really looks like we made a mistake. Could we win a championship with Ben Gordon as a starter? Maybe, maybe not. But will we win a championship with Luol Deng are starting small forward? Both are valid questions, but I would be having stomach pains if I were Paxson. Deng is not 100% is what we hear, but nobody is ever 100% and I just do not see the same player in Loul that I saw two seasons ago. I really think he was just after the paycheck and now is not putting any effort into his game. I hope I am wrong about this but it looks as if the writing is on the wall. Now we could not even trade Deng if we wanted to.

     Now for the Ups and Downs of the week:

Up. Ben Gordon and Derrick Rose combine for 45 points to beat the Nets in NJ for the first time since 2001. That is just sad.

Down. In that same game Thabo Sefolosha plays 20 minutes and goes 0-4 from the field and posts zero points and only one rebound.

Up. Andres Nocioni looks like a solid sixth man with four game with over 10 points each and quite a few rebounds as well.

Down. Derrick Rose has an ugly game against the Cavaliers and finishes with 3 points and 1 assist in 25 minutes of action.

Up. Joakim Noah has his one and only good game of the season in a losing effort againt the Magic.

Down. Drew Gooden continues to have issues with his right ankle and will have a MRI today. We need him bake ASAP.

Player of the week: Ben Gordon. He has been the backbone of the Bulls. He is as consistant a player as anyone could ever ask for. Every night you can mark him down for 21 points 3.5 rebounds and nearly 4 assists. Not to bad at all. He is starting to make a case for a place on the Allstar team. The Bulls will have to start winning some games for that to happen though.

Predictions for the week:

Bulls 101 Kings 95. The Bulls are not playing well so the Kings are a welcome sight. The Bulls really need a win and I think they get this one.

Bulls 97 Wizards 94. This will be a close one but I think the Bulls will be OK with no real threat in the paint on either team.

Bulls 88 Thunder 97. Bulls have to lose one of these games and it might happen on the backside of back to back games. I see Rose being tired and it would just be fitting to lose at home to the Thunder.

Hope you enjoyed the read. Go Bulls!

 

Posted on: December 17, 2008 7:47 pm
 

Bulls Report: Week 7

     Well, another week passes and the Bulls look as if they just can not get over that hump. They seem to be comfortable getting one game away from .500 and then breaking down and losing. How many times are they going to get to 1 game back and then just blow another lead? It turns my stomach and if you are a Bulld fan you have to be wondering if this team will ever get their stuff together and win a few games in a row.

     OK, we all know that Ben Gordon is playing his best basketball ever so far this season and that Derrick Rose is the real deal and will be our leader for years to come. Drew Gooden has become a pretty solid post player and Larry Hughes is a nice 6th man.

     What we have to be asking ourselves is if Joakim Noah will ever be anything close to an impact player? What happened to Thabo Sefolohsa? Does Tyrus Thomas know what the word consistency even means? Will Luol Deng ever return to his old self and start shooting around 50% from the field like he used to? I really can not figure out this team right now. I mean, they lost to the Bobcats for heaven's sake.

     I think the Bulls missed their shot at .500 for the time being. Even if they do beat the Clippers tonight, they then face the Celtics, Jazz, and Pistons. Then after that they face the Heat, the Hawks, the Nets, and the Magic. How many of those games will the Bulls win? My guess is around 2. That will leave the Bulls quite a few games back of .500.

     They only bright spot is that the month of January offers a light scheldule. We can only hope the Bulls get their act together. Kirk Hinrich will then be returning and the Bulls will run into some roster issues. How much playing time will Kirk get? Will he even be effective?

     Ups and Downs of the week:

Up - Drew Gooden has a monster game against the Knicks with 22 points and 16 rebounds in a win.

Down - Thabo Sefolosha has played only 21 minutes and scored 0 points since November 19th.

Up - Derrick Rose's Assist numbers are rising and he has averaged 8 per game in the last 6 games.

Down - Bulls lose another overtime game. This time to the Bobcats. Ouch!

Up - Ben Gordon is shooting over 45% from the floor and 40% from beyond the arc.

Down - Derrick Rose have a bad game shooting 3 of 16 from the field while playing 47 minutes.

Up - Tryus Thomas looks like the player we all know he can be with a big game against the Bobcats.

Down - Andres Nocioni's stats are down across the board this season. I hope he gets back in shape because I love his game and his passion.

     Player of the Week: Ben Gordon. His game is solid on all fronts. He is still small, but he is shooting as good as ever and his defense has looked pretty good as well. Do not get me wrong he is no Kirk Hinrich when it comes to playing defense, but he is twice as good as last season's Gordon.

     Predictions:

Clippers at home - Bulls 96 Clippers 99. I think the Bulls will come out strong again but will be to tired to pull off a win.

Celtics on the road - Bulls 91 Celtics 104. Boston will run away with this game. They just out-class us.

Jazz at home - Bulls 100 Jazz 95. bulls play well against the Jazz and I think we have a chance at home.

     With one win this week the Bulls will be 3 game back of .500 and things will only get worse before they get better. Go Bulls!

 
 
 
 
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