Joakim's biggest impact will be on offense

Joakim's biggest impact will be on offense

Listening to sports radio all week and hearing the discussion of Joakim's return to the court, so many people seem to think that the Bulls are going to lose some spacing with Noah returning to the floor. 

This represents a critical misunderstanding how how NBA defenses defend.   The same misconception applies to guys like Anthony Parker.   No defense in the league honors Kurt Thomas's jumper.  No defense says "I need to stay with Thomas, so I'm not going to double Derrick Rose".  

This hasn't happened even once. 

Thomas only affects the game on offense for as much as he punishes teams for leaving him open.  Kurt Thomas makes 3.1 shots per 36 minutes.  He shoots a good percentage, but his volume is incredibly low.   Team's aren't sticking with Kurt Thomas and opening the floor up, and for the most part, Thomas isn't making them pay for doing so.

Joakim Noah makes 5.1 shots per 36 minutes and scores at a higher TS% than Thomas.  More makes, more volume, more efficiency.   He's more dangerous on the pick and roll, because you have to defend him going to the basket where he can athletically finish.   

He's a better passer, ball handler, and driver, so if you leave him open at the elbow, he can go straight into the paint and score, and if you rotate over on him he'll hit the open man with the pass.   So let's nip this idea in the bud that Kurt Thomas really spaces the floor better on offense, simply not true, the Bulls offense is going to get a whole lot better with Noah out there.

On the defensive end, I think Noah will also help the team considerably in certain ways.  They'll defend the pick and roll better.   He'll rebound the ball better.   He'll provide more shot blocking.    However, I can't undersell how great a job Thomas did defensively for the Bulls while Noah was out.   He played physical and thugged up other teams enough to keep them away from the hoop.   He had great hands and had an extraordinary number of clean strips when a guy would bring the ball low in the paint, and his shot blocking, while not wondrous, was far better than I anticipated.

I have nothing bad to say about Kurt and his job in relief of Noah.  A+ for him on the season.

The next logical question to ask about Noah's return is which player moves to the bench?   The Bulls probably aren't going start going five deep which means that either Asik or Thomas goes to the bench with Noah's return.   There's also the possibility that it's a matchup thing with one guy playing a bigger role against some opponents and the other playing against a different type of opponent.

My guess is that Thomas is the one going to the bench.   The reason is that the bench right now is a speed / athleticism unit, and it's the unit Asik has been playing with.   Our bench has found their grove recently and performed well as a unit, and I don't think Thibodeau disrupts that by putting the slow down Thomas in with the fast unit.

Also, Asik has proven that he's a quality player, and the Bulls need to continue to develop him.  He needs the minutes more.   I think the team will continue to play better with Asik running with that second unit off the bench and only going to Thomas when they have some big physical matchups that they need him to come in and thug up the court a bit against.

How long will it take Noah to integrate back into the team fully?  I'm not sure, but I expect it will only take two or three games.   I wish the Bulls had one more game prior to playing their marquee game against the Heat, but I don't think it will take Noah long at all.   I, like all of you, can't wait to see what this team finally looks like at full strength.

Welcome back Joakim, and thank you Kurt and Omer for your great work in his absence. 

Comments

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  • I just hope learned some of that I dont give shit who you are attitude from Kurt thats the only thing I will miss!

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    i would keep giving kurt 10 minutes a game for this reason alone. he intimidates guys.

  • Noah spaces the floor by running. That's where his value is to an improved offense. He may actually bog things down because the bulls may run a lot more pick and rolls with Noah since they rarely ran any with Thomas.

    And I think Thibs uses Asik and Thomas situationally. Asik against Miami, Thomas against Orlando. I don't think Thibs plays anybody minutes based on anything other than matchups and his confidence in them to get the job done.

  • Do you think Thomas comes back into the rotation come playoffs as the enforcer type role he plays now?

  • In reply to bpmueller:

    I do think we'll use him in the playoffs.

  • In the immortal words of Bart Scott......CAN'T WAIT!

  • In reply to claytonabigsby:

    lol love that

  • 1. I am curious on how rebounding goes for Noah and Boozer. Boozer gets a lot of defensive rebounds and it is not the numbers but who gets the rebound determines how the play happens if it is a fast break. Noah can initiate it better than Boozer who will wait for Rose to come back to pass.
    2. I hope Noah has practiced his hook shots from the non-injured hand. That can make his man to guard him rather than double teaming Boozer or Rose.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    I think we get more fast breaks of Boozer rebounds and Noah leaks out.

  • Danilo is getting shopped JJ and Keith plus our own first for Danilo??

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    The can probably get more for him imo

  • In reply to Csharp:

    I agree, but I'd love that trade if we could pull it off.

  • In reply to Csharp:

    If the Bulls are going to get Danilo they'll have to package Asik with a combination or all of the players UtahBullsFan mentioned. Would it be worth it? That leaves the front court with Noah, YouBoozeYouLose, Gibson and Thomas. That's not bad but I like Asik's upside. Tricky call.

  • In reply to tsakash:

    Ya i just posted something similair lower on the page...but something like this might get Denvers attention...

    JJ,Brewer,Kurt Thomas or Taj

    FOR

    JR Smith an Gallo

  • In reply to Csharp:

    Where does Gallo play? He's not taking any of Deng's minutes, and he isn't a a 2. He's at least 6'10". Is he a stretch 4 that never gets any clock?

  • In reply to bullshooter:

    He plays Small Forward, move Korver to the backup SG

  • In reply to bullshooter:

    He's not a 4 (although he impersonates one at times with D'Antoni), he just doesn't have the rebounding ability to play there. Given he also doesn't have the speed to be a 2, he's pretty much a pure 3, which makes him a bad fit for the Bulls.

    Still if you could get him for JJ & the Bulls late first (not likely) you'd do it anyway.

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    Are you posting this for Mappy?

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    FYI:

    Marc J. Spears: Bulls open to trading seldom-used forward James Johnson to trim salary and possibly add pick, source tells Y! Sports.

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    Happy!!! Your not in padded room after Melo!!!

  • I, too think the Asik/Thomas rotation will be situational. When they need length and athleticism, Asik gets the call. When they need strength and toughness, Thomas gets the call. But I don't think Thomas will get the call very often.

    With Asik's progression during the season, Thomas is likely to join Scal at the end of the bench. I think everyone understands that he's our insurance policy in case something happens to one of the other bigs in the rotation...a great insurance policy.

    I wonder about the playoffs, though. Will Thomas's experience, toughness, and savvy make Thibs give him the nod over Asik when the rotation is shortened for the post season?

  • I'd like to mention a couple of recent topics before commenting on Joakim's return.

    I have to say on the hoopla(?) surrounding Derrick's All Star Game appearance as a starter and MVP candidate; sometimes it's still painful to watch him being interviewed as he appears to make the word subdued look like a galavanting, gregarious romp in comparison to his own demeanor. I mean the guy staring out the window at nothing in particular at the rest home sometimes has more glimmer then Derrick Rose.

    D-Rose is in a sense an enigma. Now regularly a lion on the basketball court where usually such dominant forces off the court have some sort of commanding/compelling presence demeanor. And sometimes Derrick does have that charisma with his confident smile and penetrating eyes as if he does own the room/court of basketball.

    But when he is in his other state he appears lamblike/passive/not bright bulb/sedate/soft. I only use all these terms because that's how verbose/bombarding the media has become. It's a never ending verbal diahrreah stream. And player's huge fortunes/followings feed into the mentaility with texting, twittering, toking.. strike that last one.

    Bottom line: Derrick Rose looked good in one interview I saw with his charismatic smile, and also looked confident/comfortable I thought in the skills challenge. But in other interviews and during the All-Star player intros he again looked like a kid lost at Union Station.

    But it's alright. I mean if Derrick was just another full of himself, brash Dougie Dancing John Wall would we all not just throw up just a litle bit that someone so seemingly "empty" of genuineness and humanity were imbued with such surreal basketball/superhuman gifts?

    No, the most worthwhile people you get to know are the most unique, original, compelling. That's Derrick Rose. And he's only 22. As his game and his team wins playoff series(and hopefully one day a championship) he will probably be the smiling, self-assured D-Rose a little bit more. But also the sensitive, genuine guy off the court we know and love.

    I will say on the court such as the San Antonio game Derrick is a beast among men. And by the way his presence toward refs just very recently complaining wise/being an advocate for himself and his team has improved ten fold. He has lately been a legit, forceful presence fighting for himself and his team. Which is just what we need himt to do. I also think if they find better plays to get him open on game winning shots where he's not falling backwards or has a guys hand right in his face, he will start hitting those shots. The increased FTA's late in games will help that a lot.

    Second, this talk of the Bulls not needing another shooter if they are going to make a legit contending run is absurd. Boston had Posey and House. San Antonio had Horry, Kerr etc. We need someone besides Kyle who can come in in a playoff setting, and can threes. Would we not gladly add Eddie House to our bench/team right now?Bogans has shot two threes a game at about two attempts per game. House about the same percentages, but with three 3 attempts per game. The one extra three may not sound like much of a difference, but it is.

    Look, I thought Bogans would be a good add because of his three shooting resume. And now his shot is coming around to respectability. Great. But we need that three point bomber off the bench in the playoffs when guys/the offense is struggling. Parker is shooting 40% on three 3's per game. And if you've actaully watched him lately he's looked just plain solid. Unless we can do better, get him!

    As for Jo, we all know that post injury he had trouble getting his wind back. But last year with the foot problem he still was fairly beastly in the playoffs. Hopefully he will get his game speed and execution back sooner rather then later(several games).

    I just wonder if all the expectations about his return might make the team a little tight/have to adjust the chemistry for a little while before they work well with Jo back. Hopefully not. I'm just waiting for the return of 'November Jo.' If that guy comes abck with the hooks, spin moves for nasty dunks, driving outer hand layups/hooks then the rest of the league betetr watch the f-ck out.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    Good point RW...
    I am so glad that Rose is not like Wall. I admit I have not watched Wall a lot. But, whenever I have seen him, he seems to act a little immature. I don't know but Rose looks like he has aged 5 years in NBA maturity in 3 years.
    I agree that we definitely need another shooter because if Korver goes cold/sick, we need another shooter to do something similar if not at that level.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    Yeah, I just hope the Bulls i.e Gar/Pax realize adding another shooter is not "disrupting chemistry," but giving us a bench catalyst/bomber when the offense/team is struggling which every sucessful team at some point does in the playoffs.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    I agree with you schaumburgfan, Rose right now is a man, though in reality still a kid. Wall's antics betray his immaturity. There is great chemistry on this Bulls team and they can shock the world. I think Parker is a dagger waiting to be stuck in some unfortunate team's heart in a big-game situation. I hope the Bulls get him for some late-game assaults.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    which idiot said that thomas spaces the floor ?? He doesn't, neither does Noah. Dont get me wrong. Noah barely improve our offense. There's no much difference between thomas and noah in O.
    i aknowledge that noah has more impact in D. But who cares ? bulls need players to punish team double-teaming Rose. Don't get me wrong, noah isnt the solution.

    While NY improved even giving up 3 good players, bulls count on noah and deng ! lol. Melo was right bulls insulted him when they choose Noah over Melo. Now, I'm afraid we'll pay for it because believe me u have to fear that knicks team.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    He didnt want to play here anyways

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    yes he did. Bulls imply refused in preseason and in mid-season !

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    Why? Can we please stop talking about Melo to the bulls now?

    The Knicks will be a marginally better team. Yes having two all stars helps (I wouldn't go as far as to say either are superstars) and both are top 6 in scoring? But outside of that, the Knicks gutted their lineup.

    Noah is going to give us another inside presence that Thomas/Asik couldn't bring (although Asik is developing). With Noah on the floor, people are going to HAVE to guard him or they will get punished. With Thomas, he was just so slow that people would leave him open to double team Rose/help in the paint.

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    We all know Bulls need an upgrade at SG. IMO, what Bulls need is a SG who is enough of an impact player to make Deng the 4th option on offense behind Rose, Boozer, SG.

    Deng

  • In reply to Edward:

    If you are getting a player that good, you're giving up Gibson or ASik. Even giving up Gibson or Asik you're probably not getting a player that good.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    exactly, he wonders me. He wants a better player than Lu but can't give up Asik. He's funny.

  • In reply to Edward:

    i agree. Bulls shouldn't trust deng for playoffs. He always desappears in pressure time (4th quarter), imagine him in playoffs in front of Lebron James. we need deng to be our 4th option !
    but u like most people here wonder me, u want a better player than deng and u aren't ready to give up one of ur worst player(Asik) ?!!u think life is easy !?

  • In reply to deewaves:

    I agree with the 1st part.

  • In reply to Csharp:

    why not the second ? lol

  • In reply to Csharp:

    It will be interesting to how the bow breaks(player movement is effected) now that the Melo/log jam/damn has burst. A flood of activity that will include the.. Bulls shooting guard needs..?

  • In reply to Edward:

    Well, I

  • In reply to Edward:

    Exactly correct, as usual one of the few reasoned posts, reflecting reality, not fantasy.

  • In reply to Edward:

    The problem is a SG better than Deng is a near all-star level player. You're unlikely to get one of those for scraps. You'd really need to pull a Spurs and get a Manu late in the draft, but even that is near impossible now that teams have worked out the need to scout international players.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    True, such an acquisition won

  • In reply to Edward:

    I don't really think that's the situation though. I think they're a good starter at SG away, they don't need a star. The real problem is the field is pretty crowded right now so even if you have a championship caliber team you have to fight through some pretty tough competition to get there, it's not the mid-2000s where you might only have to beat one other elite team, now you might have to beat three to win the championship.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    So we disagree.
    In your opinion the Bulls new SG can be their 5th best starter. And IMO Bulls need a SG who can create his own shot and be good enough to make Deng the 4th option.

    And yes, everyone knows the East is tougher now.

  • In reply to Edward:

    I only mention the East being stronger because when I say "I think we'd be good enough to win a championship" I know some people will reply as if I said "100% chance of championship? You're a CLUELESS follower".

    Deng needing to be the 5th best starter is a huge call, I think Deng would be the best 5th starter in the league in a long long time. He's better than Prince was on the Pistons, and probably better than AC Green or Danny Ainge of the Lakers and Celtics in the 80s. Maybe if you go back to the dynasty Celtics of the 60s you could find someone better.

    I just see that the Bulls have had the best point differential in the league over the stretch Noah was out. They're got to be at least a fringe title contender with him back even with Bogans starting. I don't really see how the Bulls need a star SG to win a championship. I feel good with an Afflalo type.

    I will say this though: get a star SG for nothing like you propose and this is a 70 win team.

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    If you accept Hollinger's Estimated Wins Added; Nat Silver, who is excellent, has a very good analysis of the Knicks/Melo trade

    http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/02/22/deal-for-anthony-may-limit-knicks-upside/

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Deewaves...I know you are learning English. Don't address fellow posters as idiots when you start a post. You can have a different opinion or idea but don't start a post with "idiot"...
    Doesn't work well..

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    The Bulls were on his list...we just didnt wanna get rid of Deng an Noah.

  • In reply to Csharp:

    +1000

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Excatly my friend. Bulls had always been in his wish list. If they bulls wanted, they would have got him at anytime.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Yea, just like that.

  • In reply to Csharp:

    Melo was not on the most important list.

    The list of people that Reinsdorf wanted to pay $84 million to.

    That is the primary reason the Bulls made little or no effort to acquire Melo, everything else was cover.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    that's exactly why we're mad because bulls organization isnt smart enough to spend money when it's supposed. They could have dealt noah for Melo before re-signing him.(for 13 millions overpaying)

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    times infinite....we can have different opinions and we will but if you want to be on this forum let's be civilized deewaves!

    Great article as always Doug and great long post RW, so true about Rose wide eyed daydreaming on the sidelines kinda scary trance look...but I'm sure we are all loving how great Rose has played this season especially and how good our record is even with Noah and Boozer being out of the lineup the 1st 1/2 of the season! We should be scary good the 2nd 1/2!
    GO BULLS!!!! I'm going to my 1st Bulls game this Saturday in Milwaukee!!! :-)

  • In reply to deewaves:

    With Melo trade, the bulls cant allow themself not to trade. They need to get a real SG before the 24th. its an emergency. I heard that Nuggets don't want to keep Gallaniri because they prefer draft pick. Thomas is a good defender and wont help us anymore : Let's trade charlotte draft picks + Thomas and brewer for gallaniri, smith or affalo. bulls have to get a deal done now !!

  • In reply to deewaves:

    I'd love to do that trade, but there's no way Denver accepts that.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Knicks will do some nice things this year...but this move means even more to there future. Just like many of us have been saying here...for a while now...now that the knicks have Billups expiring contract...they can now go after Chris Paul, Deron Williams or Dwight Howard next year. So im crossing my fingers that keeping Noah an Deng was a good idea...because the Knicks just got better an in the long run....they could be Great becuase we didnt help block that trade.

  • In reply to Csharp:

    keeping Noah an Deng was definitly a bad idea. we'll pay for it. And once rose will sign an extension, We'll have deng, rose, boozer and noah all signed but no flexibility to trade or sign a great player. I really hope we could beat the heat or knicks! if not ... chicago will be a good team which win games but never reach in the finals.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    +2 We better find a SG willing to take less to come here.

  • In reply to Csharp:

    They can't go after Chris Paul, DWill, or DHoward with the 11 million they'll have left in cap space even if they clear out every single player besides Melo and Amare. Doug outlines as much in the discussion under his last blog post.

  • In reply to jgingeri:

    But Chauncey is making 14 mil and only has 1 year left

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    not both galliniri and smith. only one of them.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Even only one of them, there's no way Dener accepts that.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Assuming you mean Gallinari + Smith or Afflalo, so we're getting back two guys. I think you might grab Smith with Brewer+ Thomas + charlotte pick, but I doubt the other two guys.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    i think i didn't express myself well. I mean indeed Smith(or ganilliri) for Brewer+ Thomas + charlotte pick. What do u think about ?

  • In reply to deewaves:

    I am not trading the charlotte pick for Smith and neither are the Bulls(Not really sure that he Bulls would trade a pile of cold dog shit for Smith).

    Gallinari is not, nor will he ever be a shooting guard, just like deng by the way. In fact as he is starting to put on weight he looks less and less like a 3 and more like a stretch 4.

    We could certainly use his shooting but where does he play on the Bulls, he certainly isn't starting, and given Thibs preference for D, how many minutes would he actually get.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    gallinari not a shooting guard ?? excuse me to be rude but are crazy? He knows nothing to do but shoot ! and here we go again. why when u don't know a guy it means directly he is a bad defender ??

  • In reply to deewaves:

    He is not fast enough to be a sg!!

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    i agree he's not fast but he still can knock down three better than anyone on this team

  • In reply to deewaves:

    gallinari has the shooting part down, the guard part, not so much. how can you consider him as a viable option to defend 2 guards? (ray allen, dwayne wade, jason richardson, and joe smith, to name a few examples in the east. even derozan would go for 50 if gallinari was on him.)

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    If Dwight pulls a Melo next year and wants to come to chicago do you think they would take Booz and Taj plus draft picks for Dwight??

    If you moved Jo to the 4 and have dwight at the 5 that is i think the best defensive front court imaginable with Thibs system that would be scary!!!!!!!

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    I would rather give up Noah then Boozer

  • In reply to calle3:

    I wouldn't because of Age and Salary... plus dwight can score just as easily down low as booz can

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    Thats exactly why Orlando wouldn't trade for Boozer, his age and salary. They would ask for Noah and Asik/Taj

  • In reply to calle3:

    But the salaries wouldnt match... Id give Taj, Asik and Boozer for Dwight though

  • In reply to calle3:

    and/or Deng

  • In reply to calle3:

    From what I have seen of Boozer so far, we are going to start hating him in a few years, if not sooner.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    because of his personality or game?

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    The Bulls would have to give up Noah for starters, but Howard will follow in the footsteps of Wilt, Kareem and Shaq, and the Lakers can offer Bynum, who if he doesn't get hurt again the Magic would probably value more than Noah, although Noah would be a better draw in Florida.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    Ya Im just dreamin .... I was gonna mention Deng but I dont think they would take his and boozes big ass contracts

  • In reply to BigWay:

    http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/sports-sentinel-sports-now/2011/02/22/espn-host-predicts-dwight-howard-will-be-with-lakers-in-future/

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    I would trade both Noah and Boozer for Howard. I think Doug agreed with this in a previous Bulls Beat. IMO A Rose/Howard combo would be more deadly than a LeBron/Wade or Amare/Carmelo combo. They play at opposite ends of the half court and would be an unstoppable duo. A perfect pairing. What are the majority of today

  • In reply to Jmax:

    Yes I def would give Booz and Jo for Howard .... But if we could have Jo as our PF next to howard with THibs defense that would be scary.... But how could LA make the salaries work??

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    http://games.espn.go.com/nba/tradeMachine?tradeId=4u4jxcv

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Im kind of thinking the same thing. Maybe we can land Gallo an Jr Smith. Neither are great defenders though...deff. can space the floor though.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Chris_Broussard

    1. Sources say Clippers dangling 1st round pick from Minny to Denver for Gallinari. Pick is Top 10 protected in 2011, unprotected in 2012. less than 10 seconds ago via Echofon

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    Clippers are building a good team if they get Gallinari. Vinny can interact in Italian with Gallo and bring the best in him:-)....They are making themselves a likable team and building from the draft...Now, if they can keep everyone healthy and also pay them...That's the question with the Clippers always anyhow...

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    I am sure that someone will suggest that JJ and Bogans is a better deal.

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    Gallinari would be a great pickup for the Clippers, a starting quality SF is their big hole. Good deal for Denver too, Minny isn't getting out of the top 10 this year so it's basically an unprotected 2012 pick, and I'd bank on them to still be terrible in 2012.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Maybe something like this....

    Taj,Brewer,Draft Pick

    FOR

    Gallo and Jr Smith?

    yes or no? Who knows.

    Rose,Watson
    JR Smith, Korver
    Deng,Gallanari
    Boozer,Kurt Thomas
    Noah,Asik

  • In reply to Csharp:

    it seems pretty good but we don't need 2 shooter(gallo or Smith is enough). I'd keep Taj if not i'd give up Asik instead of Taj !

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Yea i agree....I like Taj on this team.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    On the radio virtually every ESPN 1000 host said this. They discussed it on both Waddle and Silvy and the Afternoon Saloon, and not a single person disagreed.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Kind of lost track who or what you are agreeing with.

  • In reply to DougThonus:

    Gallinari latest: Outside interest well established but I'm told Nuggets are telling teams Gallo won't be moved before Thursday's deadline 4 minutes ago via

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Do you even read Doug's posts? He clearly outlines how Noah is a better offensive player than Thomas. "Kurt Thomas makes 3.1 shots per 36 minutes. Joakim Noah makes 5.1 shots per 36 minutes and scores at a higher TS% than Thomas." Those are blatant FACTS deewaves. Undeniable truths. I suggest you get acquainted with the concept.

  • In reply to jgingeri:

    i read it. yes Noah is better than thomas, i said it in my post. but again i said, he isnt that better. he barely makes in a difference in our offense.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    We've heard from the people who think Melo will make New York a force, is anyone else in my camp, that this trade isn't enough to stop the Knicks from falling to the #7 seed? The 76ers were already playing much better ball than the Knicks and seemed destined to pass them before the trade, and I don't see the Knicks really improving on their around .500 record the rest of the way given the upheaval they've just had of their roster.

    Heck, the only thing stopping me from doing a MrHappy 100% guarantee is that how well a Billups/Amare pick and roll works remains to be seen.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    I have been hearing all day through Blogs, Articles, Espn ect that no one would be surprised if the Knicks Upset the Bulls in the first round

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    If we listen to ESPN...all they want is the East Coast to do well and the more they sell on the prospects of an East Coast Media Mecca, they will do it. Anybody who claims how Amare and Melo with that team will perform(i mean in terms of predictions)are talking a whole lot of you know what...

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    Looks like James Johnson has been sent to the Raptors for NOTHING. Might be looking to absorb a players contract. I wish JJ the best. Wait, We play the Raptors TOMORROW.

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    Lets hope another deal is coming next, a much bigger one. Good luck to JJ, he wasn't going to get any playing time anyway cause the Bulls have to keep improving the team, no more time for projects and potential players. Need proven players.

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    For a future second. Not a bad deal, it frees up a bit of cap space so if someone is bought out the Bulls are likely to be able to offer the best contract.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    I dont see anyone getting bought out Rip would lose to much money and the Pistons want to resign Prince

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    Probably not, but given JJ was never going to play, why not get a second rounder and rid of his contract?

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    I just dont think we will get anyone better than JJ in the second round the kid I think still has a huge upside... This is a good trade for him though so he can actually develop ...

    But ya I def see your point

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    Yeah it's a good trade for JJ. The Raps are exactly the situation he needs, an awful team who doesn't mind playing him through mistakes. With Kleiza out for the year he'll get every chance. If he can't beat out Weems for minutes then there's not a lot of hope for his career!

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    This better be for a bigger move because giving up JJ for nothing is just stupid

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    UtahBullsFan,

    It's possible the Bulls got a 2nd Round pick to go after E'Twaun Moore of Purdue or perhaps his teammate JaJuan Johnson, who the Bulls' have been scouting heavily.

    They are projected 2nd Round Picks.

    * They have shown Paxson on TV at multiple Purdue games over the last 2 college seasons.

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    It clears cap space. It's still possible the Cubs could make another trade. The Cubs can now add Courtney Lee, for example, for just draft picks instead of forcing players to take JJ to match salaries. It also potentially gives them a bit more room in the offseason to sign a FA.

  • In reply to walrus:

    Ya true I still think the kid has a huge upside though

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    Look for him to go for 20 pts tomorrow and we should trade Noah for JJ talk;-)

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    lol

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    Doug,

    What time is the candle-light vigil? I don't want to miss it.

    http://twitter.com/SpearsNBAYahoo/status/40183187145629696

  • In reply to MrHappy:

    stupid bulls !!

  • In reply to deewaves:

    WTH are we supposed to do with a 2nd round draft pick ? they could have combine in a package for a SG !

  • In reply to deewaves:

    No one that was shopping a good shooting guard wanted him .... this could be the pick used to get Parker

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    Nick Friedell just said it's MIA 2011 first round pick. I guess that's a bit better. A late 20's pick isn't bad. We drafted Gibson in the 20's, so nahh not too bad.

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    The difference between the Raptors' second or Miami's first isn't a lot, many teams prefer an early second to a late first just because the rookie contracts for second rounders are cheaper.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    It could also be another asset for the Bulls to acquire someone in the next couple of days or in the offseason. Bulls don't want to trade any of their players, so it makes sense to accumulate picks.

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    WTH are we supposed to do with a 2nd round draft pick ? they could have combine in a package for a SG !

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    What else are they going to say. They've been promoting this trade for months.

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    When it comes to ESPN trying to be unbiased about East coast teams, it's a lost cause.

    Every year the Giants are going to win the Superbowl ... and the Yankees are just unbeatable (of course, it doesn't help that they have a really good team every year).

    ESPN is the leader of the "soundbite sports era". They don't care about sports ... unless you can condense it down to a ten second highlight reel.
    Scorers will always be the "hot" thing at ESPN ... while teams that go out and play like teams ... and play some defense, will keep winning championships.

    I'm sure you already knew that, but I can't stand ESPN's attitude towards sports these days.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    I'm with you barring significant injuries to the 76ers. Amare was already slowing down as he's seen far too much action on his microfractured legs.

  • In reply to jgingeri:

    Yeah...the biggest issues with Miami and Knicks are Wad e and Amare....both seem to get injured almost all the time, have lot of NBA miles, play type of game where injury can happen and will not transfer to an older age and depend a lot on athleticism unlike Boozer.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    I don't know if I'd go that far.
    They are going to have a decent starting four ... just not a lot after that.
    They should be better than the Sixers and probably even the Hawks.
    It's just that I don't see how they are going to improve on that very much.

  • In reply to Silverwulf:

    They're 5.5 games back from Atlanta, there's no way they can catch them from here unless the Hawks implode.

  • In reply to DontLetsStart:

    I don't mean that they'll catch Atlanta, only that their team will probably be better.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Noah is better! He'll win championships for the Bulls like he did at Florida. A winning ball player. We already have a good team, we don't want a BALL HOG, a malcontent who pouts when he doesn't get the ball. Rose likes Noah and that's the final word.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    Nice post RW

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    Thanks man.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    Tomorrow can't get here fast enough! Also, On another note, with Carmelo coming to the East I wonder what this means for Deng being an All-Star in the future.

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    What small chance he had is now gone

  • In reply to UtahBullsFan:

    I said the same thing. This was the year for Deng, but unfortunately the East reserves consisted of the Celtics and Hawks. And I'm sure Carmelo is gonna be a reserve behind LeBron every year now.

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    Never will...i never thought he would anyways

  • In reply to Csharp:

    +100, i tkink ManOnNeptune is a perfect image of bulls fans : they overrate their players !

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    Let's do it mathematically :

    Melo >> Deng

    Stoodemire > Boozer, this is equivalent to :
    Melo+Stoodemire >>> Boozer+Deng

    Noah > Turiaf this is equivalent to :
    Melo+Stoodemire+turiaf >> Boozer+Deng+Noah

    Rose >> Billups this is equivalent to :
    Melo+Stoodemire+turiaf+billups = Boozer+Deng+Noah+Rose

    landy fiels > Brewer this is equivalent to :
    Melo+Stoodemire+turiaf+billups+Fiels > Boozer+Deng+Noah+Rose+Brewer

    Chicago Defense(Thibs) > NY Defense(dAntoni) this is equivalent to :

    NYK = Chicago bulls

    I know it doesn't seems obvious but Trust me guys, beating NY is everyting but easy !! we have a real enemy. We need to replace Brewer by Smith or affalo to make sure we're better than them!!

  • In reply to deewaves:

    We just cannot compare individual players...it is a team game not a video game.
    The one advantage I see with Melo is in the last few minutes, he can hit clutch shots which can be important in most NBA games. But that said, players who don't play defense is very important which you are not considering when you say somebody is >>> than somebody.
    Anyhow, the new CBA will put a dent in a lot of these top talent heavy teams. NBA league office is happy that the Knicks have hope every year which translates to good ratings whether they win or not..

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    of course i consider D-fense. the advantage u says about melo is more than huge, it's the difference between a good player and a star. it's teh difference which would have helped Rose beating heat because he can help the team in money time which luol deng cant. Rose will need help when he'll get doubled in the post-season.
    And who says Melo can't defend ? The guy is tough,, physical, ask him to defend, he'll do so.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    1. Physical build doesn't mean good defenders...Look at Boozer and Amare. It is not also lip service which you will hear a lot from Amare and Melo in the next few years. They need a system, skills(not physical or athleticism), will to defend. The problem with many good offensive players(especially iso players) is they spend so much energy/mental focus on offense that they do not have much for defense. Only a few can play both sides(Wade, Kobe etc..)...Even MJ struggled...that's why series sometimes went to 6/7 games....otherwise Bulls would have swept everyone in the 90s.
    2. Deng creating against Melo and LBJ are two different things. LBJ is a beast and can pass when he is double-teamed but Melo will try to shoot when he is defended(I give you Melo is a better shooter than LBJ)

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    Boozer and Amare don't like to defend, they will if they want.
    D-fense is just pressing, energy, insenity, focus and works. Everybody can play D, only the lazy can't ( players who doesn't care about like suns)

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Yeah, and who coached the Suns...

  • In reply to jgingeri:

    that's what i'm about. It's becuz of coaching ! If suns players play for Popovich they will defend.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    You know, give the Bulls management some credit.
    They've put together a really good team that if they aren't there already are close.
    They know what they are doing.
    And Reinsdorf as shown by the Sox will do what it takes to succeed if it's warranted.

  • In reply to Waldock:

    i agree. and because they are running the team competently, it frees me up to do what i do best: enjoy watching the bulls play basketball games. go bulls!

  • In reply to Waldock:

    Imagine what kind of money JR would spend if he owned the Cubs with their huge revenue advantage over the Sox. As a sox fan I'm happy he's not, too bad for the Cub fans.

  • In reply to Waldock:

    -100

  • In reply to Waldock:

    +101

  • In reply to deewaves:

    I can agree with you on most of this >,<,= stuff! :-)

    I like Brewer and he is the disruptive SG/SF off the bench with great defense.
    We do need a good shooting SG though and to make Deng the 4th option!
    This is our year, let's not wait till next...we blew up the team to have a chance at the Big 3...so let's not stop there...it's going to take giving up something good now, or with potential (Taj, Asik, Brewer, etc) to get something back we want in a good starting SG (Mayo, Affalo, Hamilton, etc).

  • In reply to smiley:

    i tottaly agree man.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    did you forget about our bench being, hands down, far superior to their utter, and entire, lack of bench?

  • In reply to evbeck:

    seriously i don't really consider our bench as better. watson ? asik & thomas ? bogans &, maybe gibson but ....

  • In reply to deewaves:

    games aren't won a paper

  • In reply to joeacook3:

    lmao. Since last year, everybody knew that deng would never be an allstar. he doesnt deserve it simply. before talking about Melo, think about Granger !

  • Well....now that Melo is gone...im sure Denver is more then likely to deal JR Smith now.

    Do you guys think there is anyway we could land Gallo and JR Smith from Denver?

  • Deng is almost a year younger than Melo/Bron. I am not saying he will get to that level but he started basketball late compared to those guys. Can we say Deng's BB IQ is better than Melo's BB IQ? That's why they play the actual games and not base it on fans fantasy games;-)

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    I consider Deng the worst/best player i have ever seen. Some nights he sucks, other nights he is on fire. I mean the guy travels almost every single game lol I think most of Dengs success comes from D Rose creating for him. Thats just my imo though.

  • In reply to Csharp:

    +1. one word : irregularity. u can't count on a irregular player when playoffs comes.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    This so called "irregular player" put up 25/9 to lead his team to the only series win the Bulls have had post-Jordan.

  • In reply to Csharp:

    for a soccer player (I think he played?) his footwork is garbage. But he does so much more than score. Even on poor shooting nights he does a lot of good things that help you win.

  • In reply to ChiRy:

    severals players in the nba can do what he does apart scoring !

  • In reply to deewaves:

    so what's your point?

    I'm not saying he is an elite player, or that guys like him are impossible to find. However. winning teams need a guy like him. A glue guy, a fill in the cracks guy who doesn't need the ball.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    You act like the guys in the NBA who average 18 and 8 do so every single night. Virtually every single player who puts up that average deviates by an average of +/- 3.5 on any given night.

  • In reply to jgingeri:

    no, that's what i am about, he doesnt deviate by 3.5 but by

  • In reply to Csharp:

    I think people bag Deng too much, he's not a star but he isn't paid like a star either. For all the talk of his big contract it's pretty average for a non-rookie in the sort of role he plays.

    It's certainly not Rose making him the player he is, Deng had his career year before Rose was drafted. He was the best player (sorry Gordon fans) on a 49 win team. He's a legitimately good player, even if he hasn't quite performed up to that level on offense this year, his defense has improved with experience.

  • Melo isn't overrated. Seriously Melo is better than Durant. And Melo has nothing to envy to James or Kobe. He could score as well as them ( he was 28 ppg last years). Melo is tough and physical, ask him to defend, he'll do it. I mean one vs one Melo is as good as James. But I aknowledge James is a better team player because of his vision (7 ast for a sf is huge but not important if u have a good PG like billups or rose).
    I don't overrate Melo, he is simply good !!

  • In reply to deewaves:

    I agree, Melo is simply good, the problem is he's being paid like and commanding a trade value like he's not just good but great.

  • Newton wasn't a mathematician, he was a physicist (natural philosopher).

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Newton was actualy the founder of calculus. That's math, btw.

  • In reply to zentastic:

    he's known for his works about mechanics and gravitation.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    and for inventing calculus, and optics. calculus did not exist in the universe, and newton just made it up to help him work out some problems. read up on him, you'll enjoy it. probably the greatest analytical mind ever.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    He did other work besides the Laws of Motion, Deewaves.

    Again, calculus. You've heard of it, I assume? Talk to any math teacher or professor, they'll talk your ear off about how Newton contributed to mathematics. I know a quite a few educators in the field, since I myself teach biology and chemistry.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    no math involved there.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    not so much !

  • 1. I don't know about that. I think he was caught in a no man's land. He wanted to help out the Nuggets a little bit too because of guilty feelings and off-course wanting his money.
    2. That said, you are probably right he has a bigger ego than we think with Happy kind of fans/analysts going gaga over him for the last few months.
    3. I agree to that...For all his talk, I am not sure about his BB IQ. Saying, I want to win is one thing but really understanding is different. If he gets it, he has to get it now after 7 years in the league.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    I'm sorry Schaumburg, but #1 is complete BS

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    I highly doubt Melo had any compunction that would want him to help the Nuggets.

    He wanted his money. Plain and simple.

  • In reply to zentastic:

    Money & fame, in that order

  • 1)Bulls played well without Noah if not better (the D improved)

    2) and 3) who told u that ? did Melo told u that ? please stop with prejudices.

  • Not surprised Boston or any other contender would be interested in Parker. Honestly, watching him in that Lakers game he just looked damn good period like someone who is primed to go off at some critical point in the playoffs. I know he's older and has had back issues, but picking him(a three point bomber at 40%) up would be the smart play if they are serious about making a run.

  • here we go again. It's tiresome to always hear the same song about Melo D. did u look cleveland-denver matchup when James was a cavs ? Melo winned it most of time, melo is a winner (has never missed playoffs). Melo is a better shooter(recently ranked number one by espn in clutch players of the decade). has a better FT shooter than lebron james.

    I don't say Melo is better than Lebron but he has nothing to envy James.

  • Yeah, me too

    Are Basketball Prospectus disciples of Nate? Maybe, cause Nate did Baseball before politics

  • I'm in montreal College(www.uqam.ca). I'm a chemist. I spent high school doing high level mathematics !

  • In reply to deewaves:

    maybe its the new math they are teaching you?

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Not to pile on what MW is saying...you and Happy need to consider advanced stats before you start arguments based on simple stats like shots made, FT attempts etc...
    It is lazy to just say Melo is a top 5 player or things like that with authority.

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    what do u mean by advanced stats ?

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Google "NBA Advanced Statistics"

  • In reply to jgingeri:

    u're talking about PER ?? the stat which shows that Love is better Kobe ?? that ryan andersen is better than KG ?? that rose isnt in the top 3 of PG ?? are u kidding ??

  • Waiting for Doug's story/take on the 'New Knick's' as of right now the team the Bulls would face in the first round.

    One thing no matter what their stats are I don't count Stoudemire, Anthony, or D'Antoni as good defenders/defensive minds. And their chemistry will have a fairly short time to gel/solidify compared to say Miami. But still Amare and Carmelo along with Chauncey will get the calls that's for sure.

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    I personally think D'Antoni is criticized too much for his defense though. It is like Thibs is just an expert on defense and doesn't know any offense. I know D'Antoni's system doesn't lend itself to great defense but his team almost got into the NBA finals if not for Robert Horry's cheapshot and Stern not being objective. I agree with the calls part. That is one thing I hate about the NBA and is what is making some players greater than what they are(prime example: Wade)

  • In reply to MarkNorman:

    i think their defense will be as we expect. what is more interesting to me is, will they run the D'Antoni offense? Is Billups at 35 able to get up and down and force the issue? Nash is older but he trains as an endurance athlete. plus, melo doesn't exactly move the ball. i don't think it's a great fit. where can i put money on a ny offseason coaching change? i am not worried about a matchup against the knicks.

  • + 1,000,000

    that's what I was thinking. And with this trade, New York emptied out the whole cupboard when he could have went there over the summer without a trade. He doesn't care about winning.

  • do you really think that melo had bulls and knicks as equally preferred destinations from the beginning? if so, did not the knicks "insult" him many times over the past 4 months, by refusing to part with various players, including, for a breif time, timovey mosgof, a guy whose name i can't even spell? i don't think he was ever serious about the bulls, just a tactical ploy to force the knicks hand. however, i agree with your 3 points. if melo ever wins a championship, someone else will be the leader of the team.

  • In reply to bucketball:

    and finally they gave up that "various players". I think if the bulls wanted him, Melo would have accepted !

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Um no they didn't. They were initially asked to include Fields with the package they eventually parted ways with. Get your mind right DWaves.

  • i only have to say u : watch other nba games than chicago's

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Deewaves you are quickly border-lining on insanity.

  • also, a mathematically inclined chemist might want to read up on the emergent properties of complex systems. it will help you understand why your equations, focused on comparing individual components, fail to predict the outcome of the interaction of the components. this is something that should be intuitive to anyone who has spent more two saturdays playing pick-up ball.

  • It all depends how they are able to fill out the team, especially if they somehow finagle Williams or Paul.

  • So let's get this straight Newton isnt a mathematician and the Bulls are destined to suck...go it.

    Since you're a student try learning something - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sir_Isaac_Newton

  • In reply to bullswin60606:

    oh no comments. Stupids doesn't deserve attention !!

  • You are spot on John"Formally Mitchell Wiggins"

  • I agree he hasn't been as good offensively since that year. But it's not because he's become more inconsistent, it's just he consistently over-achieved in 06-07.

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