The Chicago Bulls have lost four straight games, and tonight they take on the Utah Jazz at the United Center. All-Star point guard Deron Williams has averaged close to 12 assists per game since the All-Star break and has a healthy team around him. The Jazz have free agent to-be Carlos Boozer on hand, and he's averaging 19.5 points and 11.2 rebounds on the year.
Without center Joakim Noah, the Bulls are going to be in for a long game, with Utah having several players able to convert shots on the interior. Brad Miller and Taj Gibson will need outstanding games to slow down Utah.
All-Star point guard Derrick Rose had a dominant 34 points against the Dallas Mavericks the other night, and is averaging 26 points in March. Rose is scoring 25.0 points a game since the All-Star break and has played aggressiv offensive since returning from a bad angle. He and Deron Williams have similar builds, and both can finish around the basket. It's worth keeping an eye on that match-up.
Rookie Taj Gibson has continued his stellar play after the All-Star break, averaging a double-double and hitting over 57% of his shots. Gibson has picked up some of the responsibility from Joakim Noah, and is now seen rotating to cover the paint moreso than before. The 24-year old power forward has a slight frame and will match-up against a much heavier Boozer, who is known to create shots around the hoop. These are the nights where Gibson will have to rely on his speed and quick hands instead of trying to play physical basketball.
Sixth-year forward Luol Deng had one of his worst games of the season against Dallas. He played almost 37 minutes and scored six points on eight shots. The Jazz does not have a lot of defensive stoppers, so Deng could force the defense to take notice to him tonight, if he comes out with a vengeance.
EDIT: Deng is having flu-like symptoms but could still play.
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