The trend of the Bulls having quarters where they just can't do anything whatsoever re-emerged last night, as the Bulls just completely fell apart on both ends in the 3rd quarter. Vinny Del Negro had the audacity to discuss how they settled for jump shots.
According to the ESPN play by play, the Bulls were 3-14 on jumpers in the 3rd quarter and 4 for 20 on inside shots [assuming I added them up correctly quickly]. Now the inside shots had a lot of misses on tips or offensive rebounds, but all of the makes were from tips and offensive rebounds.
The Bulls were 0-8 on actual layup/inside attempts that weren't coming off of rebounds in the quarter. So please, let's not talk about how the team settled for jumpers when it actually shot quite a few inside shots and was terrible when it took them.
Let's also not talk about effort in this one. The Bulls had 12 offensive rebounds/tip tries in the quarter showing that they were really attempting to hit things hard.
Compare that to OKC who had 11 points on layups and free throws combined and 21 points on jump shots. So it's not like the Bulls were giving up a layup drill and dunk fest on the other end either. The Thunder just hit shots.
Sometimes that's the way it goes, and that's the way it went for the Bulls in the defining quarter of the game. What can the Bulls do to stop slides like this? Nothing. The Bulls attacked the basket and forced OKC into shooting jumpers. They attacked the offensive glass and only gave up four second chance points on the other end.
Sometimes you just can't hit shots even when you're doing things right, and the Bulls had a lot of that going on. They had good opportunities, they had good looks, they played hard. They lost.