Tonight's matchup vs the T'Wolves was hyped as Derrick Rose vs. Ricky Rubio. The 21 year old from Spain has sparked excitement to the league and the city of Minneapolis and tonight was no different. What started to be a rout being down by 24 to the Bulls, the Wolves came back mid-way through the 2nd quarter and contested the Bulls until 3 minutes left in the game. Here's some quick hits from tonight's game.
- I Liked Noah's Play Tonight - 3-5 from the field with 8 points and 11 rebounds doesn't seem to equate to much fans but Noah's play was more energetic and showed some strides. What I appreciated most from his game tonight was his play versus Kevin Love, especially in the 1st Quarter. Noah made some hustle plays that define his style tonight, so let's hope he can build from this game going forward
- Deng Was Tonight's MVP - A lot of attention was given to the NBA's reigning MVP Derrick Rose and his matchup versus Ricky Rubio but without Deng's clutch plays and run stopping shots, the Bulls may have earned their 3rd loss of the season. On a stretch in the 3rd Quarter where Minnesota closing onto the Bulls' lead, Rose looked to Deng on 3 consecutive possessions and Deng didn't disappoint. Deng's ability to slash to the basket and converting his mid-range game, his 21 points were as important as Rose's 31.
- Kyle Korver is Making Significant Contributions - So far, Tom Thibodeau has given a more and more trust to Kyle Korver this season. Playing in 35 minutes at the loss in Atlanta, another 32 minutes from last night's game versus Detroit, Korver played 24 minutes tonight but went 5-6 from the field with 13 points. Korver's shot the ball well lately @ 8-13 from 3 point range. Speaking of players whom Thibodeau trusts...
- The Atlanta Comeback Lineup Seals Tonight's Victory - The same 5 players of Rose, Korver, Asik, Gibson and Deng who came back versus Atlanta on January 3rd, were trusted by Thibodeau to grind out this victory for the Bulls. To be fair, Ronnie Brewer substituted in key spots at the end of the game to hit big shots.
I'm not going to be too pessimistic and rant about how the Bulls gave up a 24 point lead to where a young Wolves team almost stole a victory. This Wolves team is better than its record indicates. Tomorrow night's game is set to be a laugher. Playing against a Washington team who's notorious for not playing any defense whatsoever, expect Carlos Boozer to take advantage of another inferior team.
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