Chicago Bulls vs. Los Angeles Lakers, 7:00 PM WGN

Kobe Bryant is in the city of Chicago tonight, ready to face the struggling Chicago Bulls. Bryant, who messed up his index finger against Minnesota earlier in the week, has a supporting cast of Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum and Lamar Odom to help make up for the pain in his shooting hand. The last time these two teams met, the Lakers had 51 rebounds and pulled out a 15-point win at Staples Center.

The Bulls are coming off a 26-point loss to the Boston Celtics on Saturday and have fallen to 8-14 on the year. The bright spot for the season so far is Bulls center Joakim Noah. The third-year pro averages a career-high 10.2 points and 11.8 rebounds a contest. Noah is developing into a leader for this young team, but will have to get control of his emotions.

Head coach Vinny Del Negro could be on the hot seat if the Bulls lose tonight. The second-year man seems to have lost the faith of his ballclub and the team has lost 10 of their last 12 games by an average of 18.8 points a game. To put that into perspective, 18.8 points is what Luol Deng scored a game in 2006/2007.

Bulls point guard Kirk Hinrich has been back for three games, and the seven-year man has shot 5-for-27 during that time span, including 0-for-6 from behind the three-point line. Hinrich is currently sporting a PER of 6.7 and a TS% of 40.6%. Both career-lows.

Bulls guard/forward John Salmons has picked up his shooting some in December. He's shooting 41.7% from the field and 37.5% from behind the arc in his seven games on the month, up from his season average of 38.5% overall. Salmons has struggled with quicker shooting guards on the season, and will go up against the injured Bryant tonight.

Injured forward Tyrus Thomas is still more than a week away from returning. The Bulls want to let his arm heal, before putting him on the floor. Thomas has missed 18 games this season and might not be back until after christmas.

Derrick Rose and Luol Deng, the two leading scorers for the Bulls, will each have a tremendously large offensive task at hand tonight, as the Lakers are a dynamic team consisting of a lot of good offensive players. For the Bulls to compete, it's necessary for both Rose and Deng to get involved in the offense early.


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  • this one is up a little early, aint it?

  • In reply to ZombieKevie:

    Yes. Rushed schedule, so I had to get it done early.

  • i see us playing a lil hard, but ending up losing by 15-20 pts. kobe or no kobe.

    i see hinrich throwing up another brickfest and i see deng being soft. noah and gibson will play hard but wont be able to compete with gasol and bynum. rose will play good and salmons will have his highs, as well as his lows. miller will fall asleep.

  • Sam Smith in his video blog said we need to play small tonight. Rose, Kirk, John, Deng, Noah. Doubt it would work but worth a shot.

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    Why wouldn't that work? It's our best offensive and defensive lineups

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    John has fouls, and Rose is injured. It's not by choice.

  • my thoughts exactly.

    Bulls have looked real sharp 1st quarter. at least up until rose left the game. pargo is blowing it. he's what, 0-4? 0-3? poor defense, missing assignment. should put salmons back in to start 2nd quarter...would rather salmons foul out and be forced to play pargo alot, then to CHOOSINGLY play him.

  • Oh, I'm sure it will come crashing down, but I do give the team credit for coming out and playing with heart.

  • In reply to muhammond:

    but no "leadership" with rose out

  • In reply to muhammond:

    Rose is back ya!!!!! This would be most boring team in NBA history without him

  • In reply to muhammond:

    can we get a foul?? noah's been hacked the last two times in the paint. what gives!?

    refs getting paid in this game??

  • In reply to muhammond:

    Sam Smith said that 3 weeks ago, but noone listened

  • In reply to muhammond:

    Derek Fisher takes better bumps than Ric Flair. Whooo!

  • the way this game has been called is rediculous!! we're getting no calls while getting hit on offense. we grace somebody and refs call a foul against us..

    fisher's feet were moving, was not set. no charge on rose. this is BULLShit

  • Miller and Noah are playing awesome

  • Thats the key to the season if they do they can turn this around and compete for the 5th seed

  • Noah is playing the over his head Noah who could make the All Star game

  • down 2, not bad. Now tied on a Luol Deng jumper.

  • nice shot Deng!!


  • You gotta give props to Vinny for scratching the P+R and playing really uptempo. Fits Rose, Deng, and Noah really well. Hinrich also is best fit for uptempo

  • ROSE! that shit was niiiice

  • Taj baby.

  • Rose went to the side there forcing Fisher to move

  • Totally agree. There must some invisible player hacking Kobe

  • sick dunk by Shannon Brown.

  • im getting TIRED of hinrich's bullshit behind-the-back passes. thats ALL he does anymore. the last 2 have both resulted in turnovers. SO UNNECESSARY...throw a legit pass you fuckface.

  • These refs are F'in ridiculous

  • I don't think his job is in trouble

  • hinrich chucking shots is the sign of us blowing it and leaning towards a potential 4th quarter blowout

  • Good effort Noah.

  • This game's done. Better go small

  • great fast break, Taj to the line.

  • great effort being put fourth by our guys, i know we are going to lose but we are playing out buts off.

  • Ya someone who could hit 3 is nice

  • anybody else tired of seeing salmons standing at the perimeter with his hands on his effing hips?? CUT! or move around...create something, shit

  • Artest played 44 minutes, the most minutes of any Laker. Why? the guy clearly looks like he lost a step and is a tad out of shape.

  • I feel like so much crap right now. The only thing keeping me going is DT interview with Bullseye

  • In reply to Dpauley23:

    why do you feel like crap? did you expect us to win? Bulls played solid and didnt look like that mess that went on the circus trip.

  • In reply to Dpauley23:

    Salmons is the biggest joke out there. Bench his ass for Hinrich

  • In reply to Dpauley23:

    They COMPETED tonight, so I'm happy. Unfortunately, the veterans (Hinrich, Salmons and Pargo) continue to let them down.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    Pargo is not a vet, hes a peice of shit scrub. Chris Paul is the greatest player in the game for how he made Pargo look like a NBA player for two years.

  • In reply to Dpauley23:

    John Salmons and Brad Miller need to be lined up and shot.

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    miller had a good showing tonight. especially early on. what? 2 steals...13 pts?? 6 assists? am i right with these numbers so far. miller was the least of our worries tonight.

    salmons was horrible. and johnson and pargo ruined any 1st half momentum we had going.

  • In reply to Newskoolbulls:

    Noah hustles and rebounds, but he really is offensively unskilled even to the point of missing a lot of tip in opportunities other guys with his athleticism could make. It's a shame Derrick missed about three or four layups. Maybe he just needs to try and dunk it more often, at least get to the free throw line instead of complete misses. Salmons is a small forward not a scoring guard. He should have to drive to the basket twice for every one jump shot he attempts. If he settles for jumpers there's no inside outside which he needs, and he will not hit his jumpers.

    Vinny's offensive play calling still looks lame a lot of the game to me. Tonight there were still a lot of extended pick and rolls. If they don't have James Johnson fall off of some picks in the lane and use him to back pick guys or give him some set plays/defined roles to get involved, then he shouldn't be out there. Tonight he still just stood on the outside just watching. That is bad coaching, and it's hurting him as well as the team's offense when he's out there. Good effort though tonight though by the team. If they fought like this every game, I'd have respect for this team. This 39-40% FG's offense, right now they have Taj standing on the perimeter on pick and rolls which means he's useless offensively along with Joakim when they are in the game together. If someone doesn't start rolling to the basket on those screens I'm going to kill somebody. The way they run their offense/pick and roll is just so completely vanilla. Again, Vinny is not here as a defensive coach. So offense clearly falls on his shoulders, and he's doing a poor job. A good offensive coach with Rose, Deng, Miller, Salmons(being made to drive as a three not a two), Taj and Noah being shown to cut early and aggressively on pick and roll/slip the screen could do better then 39-40% FG's.

  • In reply to SamS:

    glad im not the only one who sees johnson standing around watching. dude is constantly lost on the floor. poor coaching just makes it worse.

  • Oh come on cut us a break refs, geez.

  • Bynum does that the whole night and gets called once. You don't call that down the stretch.

  • the only thing impressive about salmons is his beard.

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