"Obviously I think we have depth. We evaluate by performance," said Thibodeau after Wednesday morning's practice session. "We're
pretty sure on four starters. We have one position that's up for grabs
and then playing time with our bench will be determined by how people
Now I suppose it's theoretically possible that Omer Asik has outplayed Joakim Noah enough that the Center position is up for grabs, or maybe Carlos Boozer really deserves to be a 6th man. James Johnson did get in great shape, and Rose could be the first franchise player to specialize in coming off the bench...
Or we could simply be talking about Brewer vs Bogans vs Korver here. I'll say Bogans is probably out right away. He's the lowest paid and least talented player of the three, so the question becomes who do you want to start next to Derrick Rose?
I'm going with Kyle Korver as my starter. The Bulls always need some shooting in the lineup and their two best shooters are Korver and Watson. Watson certainly isn't going to start, so you maximize the amount of time you have at least one shooter on the floor by playing Korver in the starting lineup.
This could put added pressure on Rose defensively, as he'll have to take some SG matchups which would overwhelm Korver that he'd at least have a shot of defending. The extra wear on him defensively could take away some from his offense as well which might cause the Bulls to go to a zone or simply to make sure Korver has a man behind him ready to help.
They'll definitely need to scheme around Korver to protect him defensively, but it's typically not too difficult to protect one poor perimeter defender. This team had a #1, #2, and #7 defense with Ben Gordon playing far more minutes than Korver will see, and if you believe the press, he's the worst defender on the planet (I don't believe that as an FYI if you're new).
Rose needs to step up though, because while protecting one poor perimeter defender probably isn't that difficult, protecting two when they play the PG and SG positions will put a tremendous strain on the big men and make it difficult for them to avoid picking up fouls.
All that said, we know Korver's going to play a certain amount of minutes, so whatever defensive shortcomings they'll need to be addressed while he's on the floor regardless. I'd rather have him out there when his strengths will be on greatest display, and that's playing full time with Derrick Rose.