In Gar Forman We Trust
Do you recognize these men? Can you identify Marco Belinelli, Nazr Mohammed, Nate Robinson & Vladimir Radmanovic? If they were shopping in the grocery store near you, would you know they are the Bulls new Bench Mob? Not me. Not a chance. I even wrote an article a few months ago, questioning the Bulls choices for this season. Losing players like CJ Watson, Ronnie Brewer, Kyle Korver, Omer Asik and John Lucas III. I thought maybe the Bulls were taking a "gimme" this season with DRose out for most of the year. And I recognize that we are only one single preseason game in, but I have to put my trust in Bulls management.
The Bench Mob brought the last two years had a chemistry and a camaraderie that is not seen too often in professional sports these days. The 2011 and 2011 Bulls teams really seemed to support and believe in one another. They had strong leadership in Tom Thibodeau and leaders like Carlos Boozer, Joakim Noah and of course DRose. But, that Bench Mob had a spark and an energy that brought life to the Bulls when they really needed it. But that Bench Mob is now spread across the NBA.
The Bulls quietly, affordably, and incredibly wisely, invested in players that could actually bring more to the Bulls bench than was there before. Now, I will need to see the wins to believe. But Gar Forman and John Paxson, Bulls Upper Management, have put together what appeared to be a very odd group of players. Odd, until you look at the numbers.
Almost each "replacement" mob teammate, has comparable, if not better 2011-2012 statistics than his Bench Mob original. Nate Robinson, for example, has 4 additional points and 2 additional rebounds compared to John Lucas III. Marco Belinelli brings on average more minutes per game (29.8 vs Korvers 22.6), and more points per game. Hinrich offers much more than CJ Watson in terms of floor and time management with his experience. And while I will most certainly miss The White Mamba, Brian Scalabrine, cheering wildly on the bench, Vladimir Radmanovic (I still keep saying who??!!), his Bench Mob replacement offers triple the minutes played per game, triple the points and rebounds.
Gar Forman has put together a list of players that most of us Bulls fans don't know quite yet. But, I have a feeling as the season progresses, Bench Mob Deuce will be primed for their moment to shine. I am sure by mid-season, running into Marco Belinelli at Potbelly's or Walgreens will be a highlight posted on Facebook quickly. And EVERYONE will know his name. One name that I will put more trust in, Gar Forman!