TEAM PREVIEW: CHICAGO BULLS
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2011-2012 Record: 50-16
Head Coach: Tom Thibodeau
Key Additions: Nate Robinson, Marquis Teague, Marco Belinelli, Vladimir Radmanovic, Kirk Hinich, Nazr Mohammed
Key Losses: Omer Asik, Kyle Korver, Ronnie Brewer, John Lucas, CJ Watson
Projected Two Deeps:
PG- Kirk Hinrich / Nate Robinson *Until Derrick Rose returns (If he returns at all)
SG- Rip Hamilton/ Marco Belinelli
SF- Luol Deng / Jimmy Butler
PF- Carlos Boozer / Taj Gibson
C- Joakim Noah / Nazr Mohammed
Derrick Rose in 8 regular season games + postseason (21.1 ppg, 7.7 apg, 3.6 rpg, 45% FG)
Luol Deng (17.1 ppg, 6.2 rpg, 2.2 apg, 48% FG)
Carlos Boozer (15.4 ppg, 8.2 rpg, 1.7 apg, 52% FG)
Rip Hamilton (12.8 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 2.9 apg, 44% FG)
Nate Robinson (12.7 ppg, 3.0 apg, 2.5 rpg, 1.1 spg)
Kirk Hinrich (10.6 ppg, 5.5 apg, 2.8 rpg, 34% 3PT)
Marco Belinelli (9.5 ppg, 2.1 rpg, 1.2 apg, 39% 3PT)
Joakim Noah (8.4 ppg, 10.8 rpg, 2.2 bpg, 56% FG)
Taj Gibson (7.7 ppg, 5.6 rpg, 1.3 bpg, 54% FG)
Jimmy Butler (5.4 ppg, 2.5 rpg, 1.1 apg 42% FG)
Nazr Mohammed (3.2 ppg, 2.8 rpg, 0.4 bpg, 46% FG)
Vladimir Radmanovic (3.0 ppg, 1.0 rpg, 33% 3PT)
Marquis Teague (1.9 ppg, 0.6 apg, 0.4 rpg, 32% FG)
Bulls' Strengths: Rebounding, Defense, Post Toughness, Playoff Experience, Veteran Presence, Coaching, Chemistry, Perimeter Shooting
Bulls' Waknesses: Best Player Injured, No Go-To Scorer Without Rose, Athleticism, Guard Talent, Creation of Own Shots, Coach Not Under Long-Term Contract
Roundup: This is an extremely difficult team to assess due to the fact that their best player is unlikely to play until late in the season, if he plays at all. I predict he comes back to play the final 8 games and the postseason, but that is a wild speculation that has no merit so don't hold that against me. Anyways, this team will play excellent defense, rebound well, and play hard for each other without Rose. They added some veterans in the backcourt like Hinrich, Robinson and Belinelli. They also added former NBA champion Nazr Mohammed to backup Noah. The Bulls will struggle to create their own shots, because Rose was always creating for his teammates, so I dont think they'll be a great team on offense but I do believe their toughness and rebounding will carry them into the postseason. Expect Deng and Boozer to pick up the slack offensively, Noah to remain the defensive anchor, and Hamilton and Hinrich to monitor the backcourt to the best of their abilities. I think Taj Gibson and Jimmy Butler will bring defensive intensity and energy off the pine and Nate Robinson always has the ability to score in bunches for the 2nd unit. I think Tom Thibodeau deserves a long term extension and if he isn't locked up soon, some tension could be created. I am hoping that Rose returns healthy and better than ever but I just don't think he'll play a whole lot of this season.
Projected Record: 43-39 (7th in East)
I think with the Bulls that the most important aspect of the non-Rose portion of the season is players outperforming their history of health. Kirk Hinrich and Richard Hamilton have not been healthy in either of the past two years. Hamilton has only play 83 games in two years and Hinrich has missed 29 games. Deng and Noah have missed 16 percent of the games for his career, and Noah is coming back from an ankle injury. Boozer has missed 21 percent, and tends to struggle to stay healthy for two full years in a row. If they are going to tread water, they are going to have to grind out wins. In order to do so, they cannot be even further down in threats than they already are. I have zero problems with Belinelli, Butler, Robinson, Gibson, Mohammed, and maybe Fesenko (who they brought in for a workout) coming off the bench. Teams turn into the bottom dwellers when they are starting.
Time for Boozer to earn his paycheck.
They've always been a good regular season team only to struggle in the playoffs. Because of that I think they're defense will bail them out of a lot of games and I think Rose will come back for more than just 8 games (very hard to predict though).
Hopefully Gibson can break out this season. Too much intriguing talent to not start on any team. Sixth Man of the Year candidate otherwise.
I had them pegged at 47-35 yet out in the first round, second round at best.
Nice work though, definitely one of the toughest teams to predict.
Nice stat predictions but I disagree that deng will shoot 48%. He can't create offense for himself and although he made the Allstar team last year, his fg% was around 40 due to drose being out most of the year
I think this will be Noah's best season thus far in his career. He thrives on pressure, and without Rose, he'll be asked upon more to be a leader on the floor. I think he'll rise to the challenge.
I predict -12.5 ppg 11 rpg 3.3 apt 1.9 bpg