Bulls top Rockets as Noah sits

This game defies all reason:

1) The Bulls beat a quality opponent [okay that's happened before]
2) They did it on the road [that hasn't been so frequent]
3) They did it on the second half of a back to back [what?]
4) Joakim Noah sat out the game

Much like the Phoenix game, the Bulls took control of this one relatively early and hung on the whole way through.   The Rockets did fight back to have their chances at the end, but the Bulls pulled away after Rose put them up by four with 30 seconds to go.   The Rockets missed and went into foul mode and never threatened again.

What we saw tonight is the result when the Bulls make shots.  Particularly long range shots.   They were 7/12 from the three point line and did a nice job punishing the Rockets from the perimeter when left open, yet they still had a ton of points in the paint including a whole bunch of dunks.

Derrick Rose had another nice offensive outing with 20 points including the aforementioned dagger to give the Bulls a two possession lead with 30 seconds to go.  Rose played efficiently tonight getting a couple and1s, and using up only 17 possessions for his 20 points.

The Bulls ball movement looks quite a bit better lately.   The Bulls are doing a great job of finding Gibson and Miller under the hoop for dunks when the Rockets went to double team on a drive or pick and roll.  Miller and Gibson were really the key to the game, as they beat up the rockets interior.

The pair combined for 41 points on 27 offensive possessions.   Many of their shots were set up by teammates who made nice passes, but give them credit for finishing them off.   The Bulls simply don't win tonight if both guys didn't play outstanding basketball. 

Tyrus Thomas also deserves some credit for staying active defensively as he had six blocks in only 23 minutes.    Tyrus got cheated on a couple blocks that were called as fouls as well.  Kirk Hinrich had a nice defensive game, but struggled to find his shot for most of the night though he did rack up seven assists, and Luol Deng had a mediocre showing overall not doing a whole lot.

All in all, you have to be pretty happy about the last two games.   This road trip could have been a complete debacle, but even if they finish 0-3 in the next three games, those two wins will keep them in the playoff hunt.    The worst case scenario is to leave the trip 5 games under .500 which certainly isn't ideal, but would leave them in fair shape in the conference.

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  • amazing ball movement of late Doug. They have been moving the ball around and not settling, we always find John or Kirk in the corners. Brad was amazing, in the beginning i was like oh boy but wow i was surprised. He is a smart savy vet and will find ways to help us. He is known to play better in the 2nd half of the season so watch out. That rebound at the end when Taj missed the free throws was amazing. I love Taj, he is a real fun guy to watch (kind of what we all wanted Ty to be). I will be buying myself a Taj jersey real soon for sure.

  • Great win. I hope the sharp passing and consistent shooting continues.

  • The officiating was very bad tonight but Bulls held on. That play were Kirk dove on the ball and called a timeout but it was called a jump ball was horrid.

  • When I see Taj I say Blair who lmao. Great post game interview on NBA TV with Brad Miller. He seems like a very down to earth guy. He said they told him 9 minutes before the game he would start and he called Noah and Thomas knuckleheads.

  • Trevor Ariza is like the SF version of Tyrus Thomas, he shows promise but he on most nights makes idiotic plays.

  • did you see Brad diving for the ball when Kirl slipped, great hustle.

  • 12 blocks on the night.

  • on a side not Kings have not won a road game since that 35 pt debacle, good i hate them ever since then.

  • regardless of whether rose is an elite offensive player or not, opponents clearly treat him like one. houston was doubling him 25 feet from the basket seemingly every PnR, and rose consistently found open bigs in the paint. he only had 4 assists but that belies how creative he was offensively. rose with a big who can finish should be pretty potent in the future-- miller gave us a taste of that tonight. its interesting that houston was getting burned by this all night and they never adjested; either they were comatose, or they decided theyd still rather not take their chances with brooks on rose. nice win either way.

  • In reply to Gavolt:

    why cant he be considered one? ask around who are some of the most scariest players to go up aqainst..and you will hear derricks name alot..trust me..he's been getting doubled since his 12th game in his rookie year..he cant be guarded on one on ones..thats why i always begged for perimeter shooting and one big who teams can worry about..a experienced point guard coach and a team suited for him can make him elite..rose is ahead of deron and paul at this pace..just check..stop letting your thought and denial get in the way of the truth..derrick's goina be something special..

  • In reply to Yunqn:

    i say this because he isnt a great midrange shooter (hes at lebrons level, which is good but not great), he cant hit 3s, he doesnt score in high volume, he doesnt get to the line much, and for all hes athleticism and body control hes been a remarkably poor finisher at the rim this year (.53 eFG, and i know he was hurt, and it will get better since he had .58 eFG his rookie year). thats not the typical profile of a elite scorer, yet opposing teams are really scared of the guy.

  • In reply to Yunqn:

    Brad Miller to retire after this season?!?

  • In reply to Yunqn:

    The SCHIZO Bulls strike again.

    They can't beat the bad teams in the league, but the good teams...no problem.

    Forrest Gump would really love watching this team play. They truly are like a box of chocolates. You just never know what you are going to get.

    Go Bulls!!!

  • In reply to Yunqn:

    AIR Miller strikes again with an amazing game. Six Blocks for Tyrus... I mean DAMN! Didn't Dikembe Mutombo make a career and multiple All Star Teams just doing that? For all the crap people give Tyrus dude can be amazing. Another good game for D. Rose and I was VERY impressed by Taj in this one. Lets hope this is a sign that this team as finally hit their stride.

  • In reply to CPBuff22:

    Tyrus Thomas deserves all the crap he gets. He's too inconsistent.

  • In reply to CPBuff22:

    DENVER WANTS AARON GRAY?

    http://realgm.com/src_wiretap_archives/64244/20100124/nuggets_tried_to_deal_for_gray/

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    I doubt Denver would give up Aaron Afflalo for Aaron Gray, so I'm thinking maybe Joey Graham.

    http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=yl45ekx

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    FYI:

    My boy, E'Twaun Moore, who the Bulls should pick in the draft, is atop the SG Power Rankings at rivals.com.

    http://collegebasketball.rivals.com/viewcbse.asp

  • I watched that play 4 times. Didn't see a perfect angle on whether Miller's foot was out, but I really don't think he was even close. The refs just missed it, and Miller was so focused on complaining about the foul (which it prob should have been) that no one even really questioned the out of bounds call. Just a terrible call by the refs.

  • yeah but its more than that i think. last year, for instance, in all the sacramento games i saw i rarely saw kevin martin get doubled, and he was the only scorer on that crap team. it kind of makes me think rose has a good chance to get voted in by the coaches to the all-star team, because opponents appear to respect him a lot.

  • I think the Bulls are showing better team chemistry including better ball movement, better communication, and help defense. The shooting along with the defense/offense has picked up and we are able to play with leads on the road and at home.

  • Yea, that one was putrid, and the Bulls announcers barely made a point about it. How every official missed the ball going off not one but two different Rockets hands is beyond me.

  • Tyrus Thomas may have the worst hands in the history of the NBA, and that for the most part is why he is simply a pitiful finisher around the basket.

    Secondly, he is mostly an out of control clutz, kind of like a large breed puppy dog, constantly tripping over himself. The only problem is that Thomas shouldn't be a puppy anymore, or a pussy for that matter.

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