Chicago Bulls Remain Afloat Awaiting Derrick Rose Return

1/30/13 in NBA   |   AJ_88   |   166 respect

The Chicago Bulls, the forgotten team in the East after Derrick Rose tragically tore his ACL in Game 1 of their first round series with the Philadelphia Sixers last season, have managed to remain within the thick of the playoff race with the roster they currently boast. 

There is no all-star point guard who handles the ball for the majority of the shot clock. There isn't a guy who they defer to at the end of each game when they need a bucket. Rose is not there to bail them out in hotly contested games night in and night out. So they need to make do with playing team ball on both ends of the floor.

Jan 16, 2013; Toronto, ON, Canada; Chicago Bulls guard Nate Robinson (2) talks to center Joakim Noah (13) as forward Carlos Boozer (5) looks on during a timeout against the Toronto Raptors at the Air Canada Centre. The Bulls beat the Raptors 107-105. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY SportsIt's no surprise either that they've been able to play as well as they have been at 28-17 because their coach preaches and teaches defense like no other. Tom Thibedaeu has coached his team to third in the East, trailing Miami by only 2 1/2 games. Team defense allows for opportunity on the offensive side of the ball because inspired play at one end is likely to translate into the same on the other. 

They currently rank third in the NBA in opponents poing per game and sixth in rebounding. Their duo of big-men, Carlos Boozer and Joakim Noah have held down opposing big men on both ends of the floor. Boozer is enjoying his best season as a Bull and Noah continues to expand his game each and every season. Boozer averages 16 point and 10 boards while Noah posts 12 points, 11 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 blocks per game, filling up the stat sheet at every opportunity. 

Luol Deng, the man most expected to carry this team on his shoulders, leads the team in scoring at 17 per night adding 6 rebounds and 3 assists for good measure. Offseason additions like Nate Robinson (11 PPG) and Marco Belinelli (9 PPG) have picked up the scoring slack of late as they have managed to come out on the court every night and play for each other and pick each other up. 
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1/31/13   |   Shaconage   |   38469 respect

With a healthy Derrick Rose return comes a glorious second half season and a very good shot at the Championship!