"I felt I had a pretty good day of practice," Boozer said.
"My hand felt pretty good. There were a couple of times it got hit,
which was good to see how that felt. It was a little sore.
my wrist is getting a lot stronger, which is important to me. When I
first started shooting, it would get really fatigued really fast because
it wasn't used to following through."
Boozer said -- and coach Tom Thibodeau confirmed -- it's his decision on when he returns.
"I'll know with how it reacts," Boozer said. "If the pain and the swelling isn't there, I'll play."
All associated with the Bulls expect a smooth transition.
"I've been going through the plays since I got my cast off about four
weeks ago," Boozer said. "I come here early, go through the plays with
coaches and some players. Now that I've had the handcuffs off, I've been
going through a lot more. So I'm very comfortable with the offense.
"(Chemistry with Derrick Rose) will be there the moment we step out
there together. I've been telling him that people are going to
double-team 'D' because he's dominating right now. As soon as they
double-team him, you try to move to the open area and let him make a
play. And then when you get the ball, you have to make the right play. I
think it will be really easy. I've been playing pick-and-roll for a
Reading through all of the Boozer stories and listening to the quotes on sports radio, it can largely be summed up like this:
1: Boozer practiced hard, with lots of energy, and didn't go through the
motions or play it safe. He'll play against
the Magic as long as his wrist responds well the next couple days and
doesn't swell up and experience signs that the injury simply isn't ready yet.
2: Boozer expects to play normal minutes when he comes back, and Thibodeau expects the same thing. They'll only ease him into the lineup if he's having pain or the injury doesn't respond well.
3: Boozer will start immediately and Taj will come off the bench. Taj is expected to still play a lot of minutes. Deng's minutes at the four (and total minutes) will drop. While it wasn't explicitly said, best guess for other minutes going away are Omer Asik, Joakim Noah, and Keith Bogans (less playing small means less Bogans).
4: Boozer has been learning the offense while out by walking through the sets, watching practice, watching the games, talking to the coaching staff and feels that his transition to playing at a high level will be very fast. He feels that chemistry with Rose will be immediate since he's been playing pick and roll basketball his whole life.
5: Boozer seems well liked by his teammates and everyone seems excited to have him back.
As a side note, Taj Gibson missed practice on Monday with his foot acting up. Presumably, the pain from the pinched nerve he suffered a week ago hasn't subsided yet, or his continued play on it has not allowed it to heal.
Obviously, if Gibson's sore, he'll probably sit out practice again today, but I don't think that necessarily means anything about his readiness to play. Gibson's pushed through injuries frequently throughout his career.