As if things weren't bad enough, Carlos Boozer felt his toe 'pop' and now has turf toe.
Both scenarios played out again late Tuesday night with an added
twist: Boozer suffered turf toe on his right foot that he said he heard
pop and contributed to him sitting for the final 18 minutes, 17 seconds.
"We'll just see how it goes every day, try to get the pain out of it,"
Boozer said. "I'm in a great deal of pain. But I got until the next
"I told (coach Tom Thibodeau) if he needed me I'd
be out there and try to gut it out. He said, 'If I need you, I'll put
you in. If not, we'll just try to get it better."
So when did this happen?
The implication from the article was that the injury happened in game five. Now if he's been dealing with this injury for awhile, it would certainly explain a whole lot of things about why Boozer's appeared to have absolutely no lift and has struggled.
However, if it happened in game five, and you're a conspiracy theorist, then you might note that this sounds like a great built in excuse to cut Carlos Boozer's minutes because he's sucked balls in the playoffs so far.
Boozer only plays 20 minutes? Well the turf toe's not quite healed. He's not 100%.
Boozer struggles from the field and misses some bunnies? Turf toe acting up.
There's been a mountain of criticism heaped Boozer's way so far in this series and rightfully so. He's been the worst of the disappointers for Chicago. The Bulls haven't played well in general, and most of the team has played well beneath their capability.
However, with Boozer, it's been more notable than with others, because when his offense is off, he's not bringing it on defense either. Can Carlos Boozer rebound from this? We'd better hope so, because the Bulls sure need him to.
Danny Granger supplied the quote of all quotes
"Joakim Noah, he's a dirty player," Granger said. "I don't think there's
a place in the game for it. You can make hard fouls and everything, but
when you start elbowing people in the face, that's when fights start
Seriously? Noah stuck out his arm as Josh McRoberts charged at him like a football player and ran into it. Then when Noah walked away, McRoberts attacked him again. The same McRoberts who decided to throw a forearm shiver into Derrick Rose off the ball.
Later on, Noah elbowed the hell out of Mike Dunleavy, whom was standing behind him, because Tyler Hansbrough tried to attack Noah's grab of a rebound forcing Noah backwards and to the side away from Hansbrough.
Let's not get started on Jeff Foster's role in this series.
The Pacers big men thugged things up about as much as any front line I've seen recently in a series and looked like they had an intention to hurt every time Rose went into the lane. Pacers crying foul? Laughable.
Have a nice summer Danny Granger.
The series wasn't so close as people want you to think
I have a feeling that people are going to make it out to be closer than it was. They've done so all series.
Look, whenever it mattered, the Bulls just crushed the Pacers. I'm a bit concerned that the team came out flat for four games in a row, but at the end of games, they owned Indiana.
When they finally realized that maybe 14 points in less than three minutes is perhaps a bit much, and lost a game, they came out and beat the hell out of Indiana for a full game, and even in the loss, the refs called it like they wanted the extra TV money or else the Bulls would have won.
Hopefully, the team plays with a bit more urgency going forward, but I think they needed that game four loss to regather their focus. They've often played poorly on their long winning streaks this season with their play getting worse and worse the longer the streak goes until they get a loss, and then they seem to ratchet up their attention again.
I don't think the Bulls took Indiana all that seriously until they actually lost a game, but I expect them to be far more serious next round from the get go.
Derrick Rose is a playoff God
Rose has always stepped up his game in the playoffs. Some will focus on his poor shooting percentage while ignoring the fact that his free throw attempts basically doubled which still left him scoring fairly efficiently.
It also would ignore the fact that the Pacers committed anywhere from two to four defenders on a typical play to try and stop Rose.
When the game was on the line, Rose turned into an unstoppable beast who just crushed Indiana. They had no answer for him, could not stop him, and the Bulls took over the game. It was that same old feeling that Jordan era Bulls fans know well at the end of games. We're going to win, you're going to lose, because we have Derrick Rose and you don't.
Joakim Noah brings the 'it' factor too
He started off slowly in the playoffs, and it's been awhile since he played really well in the regular season, but Joakim Noah got his groove back in game three, and he's been non stop since then. He had an outstanding game 4 attacking the Pacers defense and creating his own shots.
He had a great give five in the close out game as well. His defense is back to it's peak, and he seems to thrown away all doubts on offense and has his confidence soaring. When Noah's bringing it like this, the Bulls are a scary team to play.
Tom Thibodeau finally played Gibson/Asik and left Thomas on the bench
Gibson played 30 minutes and much of that was due to Boozer's toe (or suckiness), but in an interesting twist, Omer Asik got the call over Kurt Thomas. I like the fact that Thibodeau went back to the bench that worked for him early in the year.
Of course, Asik was on the floor for Indiana's one big run despite playing reasonably well, so we'll see if he goes back to it again.
However, for those saying Thibodeau is too stubborn to make changes, I disagree. He's willing to make all kinds of changes with his fringe players. He's not willing to make changes with Bogans because he believes in Bogans.
That belief was well rewarded last night, and I hope Bogans loads some crow into a t-shirt cannon and shoots it down my throat for the rest of the playoffs.
Heal em up!
The Bulls get to rest while they wait to find out who they play in the second round. Ronnie Brewer, Derrick Rose, and Carlos Boozer all have injuries and could use the time off.
The Magic and Hawks will go for at least one more game as Atlanta was simply throttled by Orlando last night, and we got a glimpse as to why I'd rather play Atlanta in the playoffs. Atlanta on its game and Orlando off equals a tight Atlanta win. Orlando on its game and Atlanta off equals the complete destruction of the Hawks.
The Hawks and Magic tip off for game six on Thursday and would play a game seven if necessary on Saturday. My guess is the Bulls next series will start two days after the conclusion of the Hawks/Magic series, so if it closes on Thursday the Bulls will likely tip off against Atlanta on Saturday, otherwise they'll play the winner on Monday.
That's not set in stone yet,,but it's my best guess for those of you trying to plan out your schedules with Bulls playoff tickets.
Funny stat of the series
Rasual Bulter leads the Bulls in playoff PER with a 40.3 and also sports a 150% TS%. The man is a complete stud. 27 points, 9 rebounds per 36 minutes, and he simply does not miss, get this man some playing time!
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