The Chicago Bulls host one of the NBAs most pathetic teams tonight, the New Orleans Hornets. It's tempting to go Swirsky on everyone and declare that I'll walk to San Antonio tomorrow to cover the game if the Bulls lose, but after Swirsk lost his dare and chickened out I think I'll pass. Perhaps the most interesting facet of this game is the potential return of Richard Hamilton.
The Chicago Bulls could be at full strength for the first time since the beginning of the season. Their schedule is about to get much tougher, and this game represents a good chance to give the full lineup some time to play together and work out the kinks prior to heading to San Antonio tomorrow.
Let's not go crazy with Hamilton here
Assuming he's able to play some, I hope Thibodeau drop his black and white stance towards injuries. He's typically played a guy unlimited minutes in his first game back from injury rather than easing him back. After Hamilton re-aggravated his injury twice a more cautious approach with his minutes makes sense. Ideally, I'd like to see Rip play about 5-8 minutes in the first and third quarters then shut it down.
Derrick says he's pain free
Rose looked like he was going half speed at the all-star game, but the superstar point guard claims he's pain free, no longer requires any treatment, and no longer thinks about the injuries that sidelined him for 10 games this season so far. That's great news for Bulls fans. Let's keep our fingers crossed that it stays that way.
Do the Hornets have any life?
Well they did take down Linsanity and have actually won four of their last six with losses coming to OKC and Indiana [or very good teams]. Of course, how much you weigh wins at Utah, Cleveland, and Milwaukee [in addition to the Knicks] is up to you. Clearly they're playing a bit better, but given they were on a pace to compete for the worst record of all time that might not be saying much.
I doubt the Bulls have any trouble beating up on New Orleans.
Some Omer time?
The Hornet's best player might be Chris Kamen, and Omer would be the Bulls best defender on him. Joakim's strength isn't in defending big centers with offensive games. His strength is running around after perimeter players and help defense, but Omer can man up against the big physical centers better.
Omer has been in somewhat of a slump after a hot start to the season, this should be a good opportunity for make an impact on the game.
Beast these guys
The Hornets really have no defensive presence to slow down Rose, they don't have any offensive players that are a true threat to hurt the team consistently, in short, they aren't good. The Bulls should come out strong, dominate the game, and end it quickly.
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