Bulls lose but show some heart

There are no moral victories in basketball, and the Bulls need real victories a lot more than moral ones anyway.   Still, for a team that's been getting crushed every time it goes out and plays a decent team it was nice to see them compete all game with the Lakers.

They had their opportunities to win, and more so than anyone, it was Shannon Brown who may have sunk them when he gave the Lakers the lead by going on a personal 5 point run to start the fourth quarter when the Bulls were up by 3.

With the exception of a few bailout calls on Kobe, the refs really let them play tonight.  

Joakim Noah went back to "I could be an all-star" Noah again.   His FG% was terrible largely because of a lot of missed tips where he just got a hand on the ball, and his offensive rebounds were inflated for the same reason.   However, he played excellent defense and forced so many changes of possession or kept balls alive that it was ridiculous.   Just an excellent all around performance.

Derrick Rose looked dominant in parts of this game, but he faded down the stretch missing several layups and leaping to avoid contact on plays he could have easily drawn fouls with on several occasions.   It was great to see him step up at points in this game and put the team on his back though.  It was a game of flashes, but ultimately he fired up 22 shots to get up his 21 points which really isn't going to cut it.  Of course, had he not been screwed over by the refs, he would have likely had 3-4 less official shot attempts and probably 6 more points.

Kirk Hinrich played a solid game overall, but when the Bulls were neck and neck with the Lakers still he missed a wide open three and turned the ball over on an attempted behind the back pass.  Kobe posted him up all game long and enjoyed great success shooting over him whenever they were matched up.

Luol Deng frustrated me by not shooting any threes until garbage time and then hit 1 of 2.   Hey Luol, do that when it counts.   You're shooting near 50% from the 3 point line on the season.  Why not do more of that?   Overall, Deng still had a good game.   He shot 50% from the field and poured in 21 points.

John Salmons sat out quite a bit with foul trouble, but it's still amazing he only got up five shots in 28 minutes.   It's not amazing that he hit 1 of 5 including an 0-3 from the three point line though.   We've seen a lot of that.   Still, Salmons played some awfully nice defense on Kobe while they were matched up, and he got the screw job on a couple of his fouls.

It really felt like the Bulls lost this game during the brief stint Jannero Pargo played.

Taj Gibson was on the floor for all the Laker runs, but that wasn't a reflection on him, because he played hard and fairly well.  

In the end, this season has been so depressing that just playing the Lakers to a game that went under double digits feels like a huge win.   It's not.  It's a loss.   Bulls are now 2-11 in their last 13 games.   Nice job putting out some effort, and it was a stretch to hope the Bulls could win this one, but in the end it still counts as a L.


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  • Nice recap Doug. I cant believe this is the same John Salmons who came in and put this team on his back some nights last year. He looks terribly old and uncertain of which shot he should and shouldnt take. Good game from Kirk, Rose, Noah, and Deng. Shannon Brown is instant energy off the bench and it just goes to show you Pax has no idea of real talent, he just like players who work hard like he was when he was in the league.

  • 2-11 from 3. You hit maybe 5 of those and we are the top story on sportscenter.

  • the third quarter where the game was won with the Lakers getting so many calls. They made like 3 field goals the whole quarter. We need seriously to trade Salmons though

  • In reply to Dpauley23:

    ive been on the trade salmons bandwagon for the last 2-3 weeks. really starting to see how horrible james johnson is out on the NBA court. we can package him up and ship him out too...idk what it'll take to develop him. he has shown no improvement (except in garbage time)...he's overweight, unfocused and stagnant on offense most times.

    deng could be a good trade piece if we can get talent in return. dump his contract while his value is up.

  • In reply to Dpauley23:

    James Johnson reminds me of a fatter non-talented Antoine Walker. He is not good at anything at this level.

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    To Nets: James Johnson, CASH and a 2nd Round Pick
    To Bulls: Terrence Willams


    PG - Rose, SG - TWILL, SF - Deng, PF - Gibson, C - Noah

    (Pargo, Hinrich, Salmons, Miller, and maybe Camby off the bench)


    PG - Harris, SG - Lee/CDR, SF - Johnson/CDR, PF - Yi, C - Lopez

    (Alston, Hassell, Hayes, Najera, Simmons and Boone off the bench)

    Can't John Paxson/Gar Forman see that Salmons isn't a SG, but a SF? Can't they see that James Johnson was a mistake? Can't they see that they need an athletic SG next to Rose? Cant't they see that changes have to be made to this roster? Can't they see that the opportunity is there for a trade with New Jersey? I hope so.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    Again with Terrence Williams? C'mon!

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    I really like how Rose, Deng, and Noah are playing right now.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    I was thinking the same thing. It's not translating into wins, but these three are hustling. I was checking stats and the team is 1-4 over the last five games. But over the same period:

    Rose avg 20.2 ppg, 6.2 apg
    Deng avg 19.2 ppg, 6.4 rpg
    Noah avg. 13.4 rpg, 3.2 bpg

    There are still deficiencies in each of their games, but they've been coming to play consistently. Aside from Taj Gibson (11.6 ppg, 7.4 rpg, 1.4 bpg), can't say that for the rest of the team.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    i can give rose a pass on his avoiding contact late in the game because of his injury. if i feel that part of my own body i notice how soft it is and how exposed it must be on every shot attempt. i cant really blame him for not wanting to drive into the body of gasol and bynum in that condition. i just liked how aggressive he was anyways and he definitely could have gone 12/22 easily.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    "There are no moral victories in basketball, and the Bulls need real victories a lot more than moral ones anyway. Still, for a team that's been getting crushed every time it goes out and plays a decent team it was nice to see them compete all game with the Lakers."

    Yet you write an entire article based on small moral victories inside of another loss.

    You left out 38% shooting? You didn't play well if you shoot 38% unless you only took 3's all night. So now Rose has an excuse for avoiding contact? What was his excuse before?

    If the refs had made a few different calls then the Bulls win this game? Salmons should stay on his feet and stop trying to block shots and maybe avoid silly fouls.

    Great call saying Deng should shoot more three's. (sarcasm).

    Sammy, that would be the smart way of approaching improving this team. So how much faith do you have the Bulls would attempt something like that? Do you really think JR would go over the salary cap even if it meant having a team that could make it to the finals?

    Because of Salmons tank job, we are still overlooking what we need most. An offensive post presence.

  • In reply to Dpauley23:

    Dumbass Bulls management probably doesn't even realize that won't have enough room for max free agent. Trade Salmons for valuable 2 guard

  • No way he is opting out of that deal if continues this stanky ass play DT.

  • What was with Kirk Hinrich trying a few behind the back passes, which turned into turnovers? Did he forget his fundamentals in Kansas? Apparently, so.

    To OKC: Kirk Hinrich
    To Bulls: Shaun Livingston and Etan Thomas

  • we should have tried to get a 2nd round pick to select a guy like Chase Buddinger to help with our putrid 3pt shooting.

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    Apparently, Golden State is getting ready to have a FIRE SALE. Maybe, the Bulls could land Anthony Morrow. He can knock down some 3's.


  • In reply to MrHappy:

    Bulls should be angling for Anthony Randolph instead. The kid has a lot of potential. Don Nelson is simply not a good coach any more and their management is lousy. And I'm not really blaming Chris Mullin, since ownership tied one arm behind his back. Man, if I had "buy an NBA team" type money there are a few failing ones I would love to buy on the cheap. The Warriors, Clippers and Nets to name a few. Mismanagement, more than anything, is what ran them into the ground. Look at what Cuban did in Dallas.

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    Anthony Morrow is loved by Don Nelson and vice versa. Isnt Golden State always having a fire sale? also the main guy they want to deal is Tyrus Thomas point 2 and 3 (Anthony and Brendan). I dont want to ever see athletic young pfs on this team.

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:


    offer u perferable sneakers, dunks, NBA lovers

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    hey nikesjordan peddle crap elsewhere.

  • How about trading Salmons to Boston?

    To Boston: John Salmons
    To Bulls: Tony Allen and Brian Scalabrini

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    There or San Antonio looks good.

    If not, like a broken record, trade James Johnson to New Jersey for Terrence Williams and move Salmons to the bench behind Luol Deng. That would improve the Bulls overall rotation and probably make Salmons opt out after this year.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    Tony Allen would go into hiding before coming to the Bulls. Rumor has it people from chicago want him dead from a bar fight from when he was a rookie. I dont want Allen anywhere near Rose lmao

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    any word on Roses rib?

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    Rose, Hinrich, and Noah sat out practice today, but expected to play tomorrow

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    Bulls lack talent to take on the big boys. Obvious!

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    Phil Jackson mentioned that he didnt like the fact that Lakers gave up to many offensive boards and he mentioned Noah got 14 of them.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    I hear now Golden State with a $65 Million payroll and many games below .500 are holding a fire sale. To me, fire sale means getting players for expirings ala Gasol/Grizzlies giveaway. Miller's $12 Mil expiring to G.S. for Monta Ellis. Now! Or Tyrus and Jerome James expiring. Plus we give them the Bulls 2010 1st round pick. Hell, if we can't get Ellis go after Randolph. We get Ellis scoring it could turn the season around. Then if you have Ellis and Rose, and Wade(or Bosh) becomes available you pay the max and go over the f-ing luxury tax Reinsdorf for a team like that. You've watched your wealth balloon to the top three franchise in the league. Time to pay the fans back man.

  • Doug just mentioned this on Bullseye with his interview with Fred that they told him to stop taking 3's two years ago. I'm pretty sure that they felt he could get post game and wouldn't have to make 3 pointer

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