Joe Johnson went five for five from the three point line, and the Hawks shot over 50% from both the three point line and the field. Among other problems, the Bulls could not stop the Hawks early offense. The bulls weren't turning the ball over like crazy, but the Hawks were running on misses and getting many shots in transition.
No ball movement early
The Bulls started with their similar trend of completely wretched play to start games. There was no ball movement, and the Bulls settled for contested jumper after contested jumper.
Things improved in the second and third as the Bulls found plenty of points in the paint, but ultimately, but the early rough start and hole they had to build out of made things far more difficult than it would have been otherwise.
Atlanta made their shots
As noted above, they shot over 50% from both the field and the three point line. I don't think it's likely they're able to repeat that shooting performance four times as the Hawks hit a ton of tough shots.
Of course Orlando fans are still waiting for the Hawks to cool off, so the Bulls can't count on the Hawks starting to miss their shots. I do like the way the Bulls contested most of the jumpers, but Atlanta, particularly Crawford, made shuts under duress.
The Bulls have only played one good game in six so far
I still think the Bulls will get past Atlanta, much like I thought Orlando would get past Atlanta after a loss in the opener, but Bulls fans should be plenty nervous right now.
Ultimately, Chicago has played just one good game in the playoffs, and wwhile the pressure wasn't necessarily on them against Indy because they were winning while playing badly, they'll need to step it up a whole ton if they want to really make a run at this thing in the playoffs.
Even if they skate by Atlanta by playing less than their ideal game, Miami is set to crush the crap out of them playing at the level they've played so far.
Just to make matters worse, Rose sprains his ankle
In a meaningless play Derrick Rose is chasing Jamal Crawford with two seconds left on the clock and steps on the back of Crawford's foot to aggravate his ankle sprain. It didn't look terribly bad, but never good to see your star player limping off the court especially after a loss.
Rose said the ankle was fine after the game, but he hasn't been attacking the same since the first ankle sprain, so we'll have to hope for the best.
Not worried about the outcome of the series, but losing game one makes it almost automatically a tough series. It's not impossible to come back from, but the Bulls are clearly behind the eight ball early.
Fortunately, they're still the better team and should improve for game two.