Tag: Derrick Rose
Tim Thibodeau kept on saying time after time that the Chicago Bulls had what it took to win, that they had more than enough to win despite the injuries that had taken out Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah. It was a valid argument during the regular season when the Bulls flourished while their leading scorer Derrick Rose dealt with a series of distinct injuries that forced him out of half the games of the regular season. But losing Rose after game one against the Philadelphia 76ers and dealing with the loss of their top-rebounder Joakim Noah for the last 4 matches of the NBA Playoffs first round was just too much for the ailing Bulls. And with a series of misfortunate events and a solid performance from the 76ers that didn’t let this one slip by, the Chicago Bulls dream was cut short.
And yet the future, at least for this upcoming season is not looking too bright for these guys. Derrick Rose will undergo surgery to repair his torn ACL and the recovery could take anywhere between 6-8 months. Joakim Noah is probably not going to need surgery but he’s certainly going to be needing some extra rest, while on the other hand, Loul Deng, will undergo surgery to repair the ligaments in his wrist after he plays with team USA in the London Summer Olympics. And it’s really hard to just put it all into perspective for the Chicago fans. Heck, it seems that even some player are in a little bit of disbelief. The Bulls were a team that was expected to give the Miami Heat a run for their money; a team that many believed would bring back a national championship ring. Instead, they are leaving the Playoffs in the first round against a poorly seeded team.
“I can’t believe it’s over,” Noah said, “but we have to move on. You put all this work and then fall short, it’s tough. God works in mysterious ways, I guess.” But they weren’t that mysterious. Injuries kept on ailing this team and breaking down the overall spirit of the squad. But now comes a time to rest. There is really nothing left for this guys to do but rest. Carlos Boozer, a player that really needs to improve his game, will return to his home in Miami. He’s going to be working on improving his game. “Everything, everything. I just want to come back a better player, all around, inside and out, defensively, offensively, a better leader, continue to improve as a player,” he said.
Joakim Noah on the other hand will travel to far-flung destinations including Cameroon. As for Rose, it is still uncertain what’s in store for him. A lengthy recovery from surgery is a fact. And the Chicago fans are going to have to be patient and understand that there is little to be done now. This is the Chicago Bulls core, there is not much space to negotiate and find a new guy to bring in. But quite frankly the Bulls are stuck in a moment, and getting out of it is only a matter of time. We’ll have to wait and see if next season they can be as competitive as the Miami Heat.
The Cavaliers without LeBron James are a thing of the past. Even thought that at 13-21 for the season the Cavaliers are very far away from the numbers they pulled off with King James, things have been running a bit smoother for the squad. With the incorporation of freshman Kyrie Irving this season, things have been running a bit smoother. Perhaps because of a matter of self-respect, the Cavaliers needed to come out against the Chicago Bulls and give a real fight. Last time around, back in January 20th the Bulls manhandled the Cavaliers beating them by 39 points, despite playing without Derrick Rose, who rested a sore toe. Still, the Cavs gave a good fight, but it wasn’t enough to even get close after a brilliant third quarter by the Chicago and the Bulls took a 112-91 win over the Cleveland Caveliers.
This time, the Bulls had to give it a little more of an effort, but it was clear from the start that the Bulls were going to take the win. The NBA’s reigning MVP was the guy in charge of leading the Bulls to their 5th straight win and 10th in their last thirteen matches. There was still a little suspense before the win. That was until Derrick Rose took over in the third quarter, scoring 10 of his 19 points and adding six of his nine assists. As if that was not enough, more help came from the rest of the Chicago Starters. Luol Deng scored a season-high 24 points and Carlos Boozer added 13 points and 11 rebounds to guide the visiting team. With this performance, the Bulls have now improved to 30-8 for the season, and are still just a step behind the Miami Heat, the team that currently leads the league.
Truth is that sometime Derrick Rose makes it all look a little too easy. “D-Rose can do whatever he wants whenever he wants,” said Carlos Boozer about the Bulls’ point guard performance. “The great thing about him is any moment he can take over a game. He has his imprint on every game we play. It’s fun playing with him, but it’s also fun to watch.”
And he was right about his comments. The third quarter was all about Derrick Rose and the Chicago Bulls. The Cavaliers really didn’t had anything to throw at them. For starters, Rose, alone, accounted for 22 points in the quarter as the Bulls scored 38 and crushed any remaining hope for the Cavs to take this win at home. Antawn Jamison scored 22 points, and finished the night with 4 rebound to close the match as the best performer for the Cavaliers, but it simply wasn’t enough to keep the Cavs from dropping their third straight game since the All-Star break.
The Cavs really missed Irving. He’s been gone for 4 games now and it is still uncertain when is he going to be back in the court. Irving has been fighting a flu bug for several days and having their leading scorer and playmaker out of the court has really proved to be an unbearable obstacle as the Cavs have now dropped their fourth straight game.
The NBA season finally kicked in with some Christmas day action that included games with the league’s finest teams. Among the highlights of the opening game day was a rematch of last year finals between the Miami Heat and Dallas Mavericks, won by LeBron James and Co.; a great match between the New York Knicks and the Boston Celtics, on which Carmelo Anthony shined with 37 points for the Knicks win and a close and exciting match between the Chicago Bulls and the LA Lakers where none other than the reigning MVP was in charge of making the winning shot.
Talk about clutch time brilliance: the LA Lakers were ahead of this one for the better part of the game. As a matter of fact the Lakers had an 11-point advantage over the Chicago Bulls in the fourth quarter before Derrick Rose brought up his game and got the Bulls rolling for a rally that cut the difference down in the last four minutes. He would eventually get pass Derek Fischer’s defense and drive into in the middle for a nice jumper over Pau Gasol to give the Lakers an 88-87 lead with 4.8 seconds left in the quarter. And this is the point in the story where we got to bring up one other talented player in the Bulls rooster: Luol Deng.
It was Derrick himself who acknowledged how much teamwork this team put together. Deng scored 21 points, recorded 7 rebounds, 3 assists and 4 steals and one very important block for the night, but it was his work on the defensive end that made a huge difference. Just in the last 20 seconds of the match, he was responsible for stealing Bryant’s pass to Gasol to set up Rose’s winning shot. And as if that was not enough, it would be Deng himself who took on Kobe Bryant, mano a mano, and managed to block the would-be-a-winner shot from Kobe as the game expired. At the end, it was just not these two plays that made a difference. Deng was doing all sorts of dirty defensive work to keep Kobe from playing at his best.
Still, the veteran all-star and the Lakers franchise player finished the game with 28 points, 7 rebounds, 6 assists and 2 steals. Not that bad considering that he was playing with an injury on his wrists. Bryant wore a compression sleeve on his right arm while playing without a brace on his right wrist. It seemed that at moments he was having some trouble handling the ball, but his jump shot was smooth and his footwork was as good as it has always been. Then again, he had 8 turnovers for the night, but I guess we could blame most of that on his torn wrist ligament.
Despite dropping an 11-point advantage at home against the Chicago Bulls in their opening game, many fans were happy with what they saw from the Lakers. Considering all the internal issues that were disjointing this team from it’s score last year, this team certainly looks much more bonded and synchronized. Now we’ll have to see how much ego-control can their new coach, Mike Brown, bring to the star-filled LA Lakers.
The Miami Heat has proved they can play together. Chris Bosh, who for most part of the season had been considered something of a third wheel, having yet to prove he had the caliber or the spirit to match the likes of his all-star teammates Dwayne Wade and LeBron James. Sure enough, if we do take a close look at his numbers all season long, Bosh wasn’t the brightest star in South Beach. But that doesn’t really matters as it was Bosh who brought on his A-game to help serve the Bulls its second consecutive lost; something that didn’t happen to Chicago since February.
The Chicago Bulls cannot lose game four. The team that holds the regular season’s MVP and the coach of the year award cannot give the Miami Heat a 3-1 advantage, because quite frankly, the Heat has found a way to slow down (not stop, there’s no stopping him) Derrick Rose, and its not going to look pretty. Their offensive game has to change, and has to change now. The Bulls are relaying heavily on the pick and roll, but they must mix it up a little if they hope to survive this series.
Now, things have gone wrong in the last two games for Chicago, but truth is that if the Bulls manage to win game 4 in Miami, they could once again get the best hand in the series. Now, what really matters here is the work that Miami has been able to put together on defense. His was going to be a very defensive series, we were all fairly aware of that situation. As a matter of fact, the Bulls and the Heat ranked as the number 1 and 2 teams in the league in field-goal percentage defense. And what they have done to slow down Rose has been just a bit short from brilliant. Rose is 15 for 42 from the floor in Chicago’s last two losses.
The Bulls are going to need to reconsider their defensive rolls. It’s time to leave behind the whole incident that cost Joakim Noah a $50,000 fine. They need to find a way to not only control Wade and James, but also a way to keep Bosh under the radar. Quite frankly Bosh wasn’t really expected to play like he’s been doing so far into the season. And Chicago needs to find answers. if the Chicago Bulls are going to tie the series, they need to find a way to contain Chris Bosh. He already has games of 30 and 34 points in this series. Let’s not forget that his 34 points in game three where vital to the team’s win. But not only has he been playing great basketball: he was able to– and he’s managed to erase the memory of his disastrous 1 for 18 shooting night in Chicago earlier this season, and certainly make up for it when the Miami Heat needed him most.
Now, Carlos Boozer is going to have to bring back his A-game and there is got to be more help coming from Joakim Noah and the rest of the supporting cast. There are three big names in Miami. The Bulls are going to need a bit more love from everybody else. It’s going to be too hard to relay solely on Derrick Rose to win this series.