Forget about Boston Celtics or Los Angeles Lakers topping Chicago Bulls record
Everyone knows the former champions are even better then when they won their title -- so what's to stop them from breaking the Bulls' record of 72 victories set in 1995-96?
Making it really exciting, it remains to be seen which former champ will do it ... or if both will ... because the 2008 Celtics and the 2009 Lakers think they're that good.
The Lakers have avoided crowning themselves as local talk show hosts debate whether they will win 75 or 80. The Celtics now have Rasheed Wallace, the NBA's answer to Howard Stern, who announced, without prompting:
"I think we can get that Bulls record."
Since "Sheed" has been wrong about 100 times in a row, that should settle that.
No, really: Showing that the Celtics are either confident or talk too much, teammate Glen Davis joined Wallace.
Asked about the record, Davis noted, "We can do some unbelievable things."
Lack of three point shooting is a critical flaw
Watching the first three games of the season one thought repeatedly stands out to me. The Bulls can not shoot the three. You see teams leaving our perimeter players alone on defense, massively cheating on the strong side of the ball, and jamming three guys in the paint to shut down the drive. That's not the bad news though. The bad news comes when trying to figure out how the Bulls can fix it.
Right now, the three players locked into the Bulls future appear to be Derrick Rose [franchise player?], Luol Deng [biggest contract], and Joakim Noah [talented young player we all want to keep]. None of these players can shoot the three. That leaves only two starting positions left, SG and PF to get three point shooters at. Good 3 point shooting PFs are few and far between which is an issue. We were unwilling to pay the best 3 point shooting guard in the NBA [or at least top 5] 9 million a season last summer.
Can John Salmons and Kirk Hinrich do a better job shooting the long ball? Of course. They're not going to shoot this badly for a whole season. However, it only takes a couple games of watching Salmons shoot to recall that he doesn't like spot up shooting. That he needs to shoot in awkward rythyms, and that he's not really a good candidate to ever be a floor spacer. Kirk Hinrich's always been a streaky three point shooter as well, and relying on him to be our three point threat is also dicey.
Top Ten Reasons Why Tyrus Thomas Didn't Get a New Contract
When yesterday's deadline for contract passed and the Bulls failed to reach an agreement with Tyrus Thomas, you knew where this was headed. Predictably, Thomas is upset about the situation and we've got ourselves another season that will be filled with endless questions about his future with the team.
We're big fans of Tyrus around these parts but understand why the Bulls didn't pony up the cash to keep their promising young power forward in Chicago. In fact, we wrote a top ten list about it. Original, we know.
10. It's a New NBA
Back when the NBA was handing out $32 million contracts to guys like Eddie Robinson, maybe Tyrus would've had a chance at the kind of payday he's looking for. But just like John Q. Taxpayer, franchises around the NBA are struggling and any extra spending must come with a damn good reason for doing so.
Something John Paxson has apparently yet to find in regards to Thomas.
Deng subtracts his injury label from Bulls' insult to fans
First, the good stuff. Then I'm going to pound the Bulls.
It's early and he could fall apart, but this is not your father's Luol Deng. This is not the forward I feared we'd see. Not after 24 points and 20 rebounds in the win over Milwaukee on Tuesday night. There has been nothing mopey about where to go in Derrick Rose's offense the way he was last season.
Deng gets open, he takes the shot, he hits it. What's more, the guy with the label of soft --- yes, label that has been hung here --- muscled up on Andrew Bogut on one play and flicked him from the hoop to near the free-throw line.
Not that this makes the Bulls good. Or even tolerable. This is not a good team. It might be a playoff team because the NBA lives with an even greater stellar-or-stink chasm than this season’s NFL, but look, the Bulls can't shoot well with any regularity, nor can they guard people for two halves. Both problems were on display last weekend in Boston and Miami, and then, in their maddeningly inconsistent way, the Bulls both shot well and played defense to the point that they forced the bad and dumb Bucks into a blocked shot and airball in the dying seconds.