Should the Bulls bench Carlos Boozer?

Carlos Boozer needs to step up or sit down

5/9/13 in NBA   |   MortonsLaw   |   156 respect

May 6, 2013; Miami, FL, USA; Chicago Bulls power forward Carlos Boozer (5) in the first half in game one of the second round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs against the Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY SportsIt’s easy to use all the injuries and illness as an excuse for the Bulls. However, they still have one max contract player on the floor, and one would think this is the perfect  time for Carlos Boozer to put the team on his back and play like a max player.

Boozer actually had a respectable season for Chicago; with 16 PPG and just under 10 RPG he was a borderline all-star. Anyone who has read anything I’ve written on this site knows I have a hate-hate relationship with Boozer. Even when he produces it’s hard to love the guy, because of how lazy he plays on defense. While he shows flashes of effort defensively, he’s never reliable when it comes to rotating on help defense.

Head Coach Tom Thibodeau has shown little patience with Boozer late in games and never hesitates at benching him in favor of Taj Gibson. In fact, in game 1 of this current series against the Heat, Boozer sat for the majority of the second half. The result was a Bulls victory. It’s to the point now where Thibodeau should consider benching Boozer as early as possible, especially if he’s giving the team nothing offensively.

I question whether or not Boozer wants to even be on the floor in this series. He appears timid and his body language screams don’t give me the ball. He scored 6 points in game 1 and 8 points in game 2. Nothing comes easy against the Heat defense; they are all ball hawks. I’ve noticed Boozer rushing his shots in fear of someone blocking it. The problem is his release is so slow, but perhaps he should go with some head fakes, or drive the ball strong to the hoop. Another big issue for Boozer is not having Kirk Hinrich feeding him the ball in proper position. Nate Robinson and Boozer seldom get on the same page. Boozer needs to be a focal point of this offense, but just isn’t.

While I kill Boozer for his lack of effort on defensive rotation, he is just as lazy on offense. Boozer is 6’9”, and we all know how active the Heat are defensively. At his height he should never be going up with soft layups around the rim. DUNK THE BALL WITH TWO HANDS!!!!!!  I’m not going to get into the refs allowing the Heat to get away with fouls around the rim, but I feel if you go up strong and get your hands on the rim, you’re more likely to draw fouls against them. Likely.

The Heat recorded an insane 56 points in the paint in game 2, after only scoring 32 in game 1. I’m not going to lay all the blame on Boozer, because the Bulls do bring a lot of help when LeBron makes his move. It isn’t easy to be constantly rotating. With that said, I don’t know how Thibodeau doesn’t strangle Boozer with all the times he literally doesn’t move and just watches players dunk the ball. The best is when the camera shows Boozer yelling about defense after a made basket. It makes you sick to watch because he when needed he just watches.

I do want Boozer to succeed; the Bulls need his production to compete with Miami. I just feel if he isn’t producing offensively, then what is the point of him being on the floor at all?  Tom Thibodeau—your move!
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