Trans. Dec 9 10:22 ET (Dec 9 10:22 ET ) With their star guard done for the season, the Chicago Bulls hope their current leading scorer is healthy enough to get back on the floor. Luol Deng could return from a one-game absence when the Bulls try to get back on track and avoid a third consecutive home loss to the lowly Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday night. Averaging 19.4 points, 7.1 rebounds and 4.2 assists, Deng is day to day with an Achilles' injury that kept him out of Chicago's 92-75 defeat to visiting Detroit on Saturday. With another season-ending knee injury to Derrick Rose and guard Jimmy Butler still out due to a toe injury that has sidelined him the past nine games, the Bulls (8-10) can't afford to be without another key contributor.
After a pair of blowout wins over the Brooklyn Nets and Orlando Magic late last week, the New York Knicks suffered their worst defeat of the season on Sunday, a 114-73 drubbing at the hands of the Atlantic Division-leading Boston Celtics that stands as the most lopsided result in the NBA this season (eclipsing a 38-point Los Angeles Clippers win over the Derrick Rose-less Chicago Bulls) and the third-worst loss at Madison Square Garden in franchise history (trailing a 50-point beating by the Dallas Mavericks in 2010 and a 43-point defeat by the Charlotte Hornets back in 2002 . The visiting Celtics dominated the Knicks from the opening tip of the Sunday afternoon matinee, scoring the first 12 points of the game, leading by 17 points midway through the first quarter and needing just over 11 minutes to open up a 25-point cushion that was never seriously threatened.
The ball movement and open-3-pointer-hunting of the wins over Brooklyn and Orlando was replaced by isolation, stagnation and bricks. The defense, which had at least been passable against the Nets and Magic, was once again virtually nonexistent. Jordan Crawford and Jared Sullinger looked like All-Stars; Amar'e Stoudemire scored 17 points on seven shots but gave it all back (and then some) on the other end; Carmelo Anthony, Raymond Felton and just about everyone else on the New York roster looked like they'd rather be doing anything in the world than wearing a Knicks uniform.
Considering they were wearing the team's new orange alternate jerseys , maybe that makes some sense. Those tank tops seem to be cursed, with the Knicks losing all six times they've worn them this season — their premiere, to a Rose game-winner on Halloween ; their home debut, to a Spike-dapping Kevin Love; to the San Antonio Spurs, in J.R. Smith's horrendous return ; to the Atlanta Hawks, in a game that led coach Mike Woodson to say it was like his team was "not even trying right now" ; to the New Orleans Pelicans, despite star Anthony Davis playing just 10 1/2 minutes and leaving with a broken hand ; and to Boston, in a game that completely erased any momentum from the previous two wins and has the team and its fans right back on the brink of a meltdown.
There is, however, some good news — the Knicks don't have to wear the orange uniforms anymore, according to Marc Berman of the New York Post :
Joakim Noah may have summed it up best, if a tad inappropriately: “We sucked tonight and we’ll do better next game,” the All-Star center repeated, following the Bulls’ 92-75 loss to the Pistons at the United Center. But without three starters—All-Star small forward Luol Deng, suffering from a sore left Achilles’, joined sidelined shooting guard Jimmy Butler, still recovering from a turf-toe injury, and of course, Derrick Rose—Detroit won in Chicago for the first time since 2006, courtesy of the Bulls’ 33.3 percent shooting from the field, a nine-point third quarter, losing the battle of the boards and allowing 12-for-19 three-point shooting, a major reason Pistons point guard Brandon Jennings scored 33 points on the evening. You have a good win and the thing you’re concerned with is how quickly everything can change, so you lose a guy and you’re starting a different group, then your bench changes,” Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau explained. Taj Gibson, filling in for Deng at a new position and perhaps the Bulls’ lone bright spot, scoring 21 points and 10 rebounds to notch another stellar outing in what’s been a career individual season thus far, was similarly defiant.
In the second season of his second stint in Chicago, Kirk Hinrich once again has been asked to take on starting point guard duties. Derrick Rose's torn meniscus thrust Hinrich back into the starting role, where he averaged 7.7 points and 5.2 assists in 60 starts for the Bulls a year ago. Injuries aside, Hinrich has been a reliable asset for Tom Thibodeau, last year allowing Nate Robinson to remain with a second unit deprived of scoring and, in 2013, keeping sophomore Marquis Teague on the bench as he continues to develop in Year 2. His shooting numbers have been poor since arriving in Chicago -- a career 42.7 percent shooter before signing with the Bulls in 2012, Hinrich has shot just 37.7 percent in one-plus years -- but Hinrich has been an apt passer surrounded by scorers in Luol Deng, Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer.
Even without Derrick Rose, the Chicago Bulls have shown they can be an elite team if they defend and rebound at a high level. That formula has served them well in years past when Rose has been out, and it's what the Bulls will look to do for the remainder of the season with their star guard sidelined because of another knee injury. Chicago will continue that approach against a team it's dominated in recent years when it hosts the Detroit Pistons on Saturday night. Facing two-time defending NBA champion Miami on Thursday, the Bulls defended and rebounded as well as they have all season.
This is the Chicago Bulls that are hard to beat, Derrick Rose or no Derrick Rose. Since Rose went down with a torn meniscus the Bulls have struggled at both ends of the floor — they had been giving up 13 more points per 100 possessions defensively than they had with Rose. That was just…
For whatever criticism is aimed at Carlos Boozer, it must be said that the Bulls power forward handles it all very gracefully, as nimble as his footwork in the low post. But while the Bulls, especially sans Derrick Rose, are usually jump-started by All-Star center Joakim Noah’s energy, inspired by veteran floor general Kirk Hinrich’s intangibles, have the gaps filled in by All-Star small forward Luol Deng’s all-around play and get an extra boost from top reserve Taj Gibson, Boozer’s understudy, it must be acknowledged that as much as those blue-collar players are the heart and soul of the squad, none of them is as offensively gifted as the much-maligned native of Alaska. Therefore, as much as the Bulls’ defense, certainly not Boozer’s forte, was responsible for holding the high-flying Heat to 87 points Monday night at the United Center, his offense, responsible for a game-high 27 of the home team’s winning 107 points, is undeniably just as relevant in the scope of the victory.
CHICAGO -- No matter the circumstances, the Chicago Bulls tend to rise to the occasion in the regular season against the Miami Heat. Guard Derrick Rose is sidelined following knee surgery, but the Bulls now own four wins over the Heat without Rose during the past three seasons. Forward Carlos Boozer scored 27 points Thursday as Chicago rolled to a 107-87 victory over Miami at the United Center. They're our rivals," Bulls forward Taj Gibson said.
Chicago Bulls star Derrick Rose has a warning for anyone who thinks he might be injury prone and ready to call it a career as an NBA player. ... I know I'm going to be all right," Rose said. Speaking at a news conference Thursday, Rose said he plans to get back on the basketball court as soon as he can. "The hard part that I had to go through in life, period, is living in poverty and not being able to get what I want," Rose said.
Dec 5 (The Sports Xchange) - Highlights of Thursday's National Basketball Association games. - - - Bulls 107, Heat 87 Forward Carlos Boozer scored 27 points as Chicago rolled to a 107-87 victory over Miami. No matter the circumstances, the Chicago Bulls tend to rise to the occasion in the regular season against the Heat (14-5). Guard Derrick Rose is sidelined following knee surgery, but the Bulls (8-9) now own five wins over the Heat without Rose during the past three seasons. Miami was missing guard Dwyane Wade (illness) and forward Chris Andersen (personal reasons). ...
The Scoop: None.
Dec 5 9:46 ET
News (various sources)
Bulls' health improving as Deng, Butler recover from injuries (Comcast SportsNet Chicago) (1 Day Ago | courtesy: Comcast SportsNet Chicago) DEERFIELD, Ill. — The Bulls, down to nine healthy players in their last game, might get some reinforcements back in the lineup in the near future. Luol Deng, who missed Saturday’s home loss to the Pistons with a sore left Achilles, wasn’t a full participant during practice Monday at the Berto Center. But Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau sounded relatively optimistic about the All-Star small forward’s chances of playing Tuesday night against Milwaukee at the United Center, the first game in a stretch of four in five nights. Fellow starter Jimmy Butler, who’s been sidelined since Nov. 18 with a turf-toe injury, is also on the mend. More...