Bulls at 76ers 6pm on ESPN

Bulls at 76ers 6pm on ESPN

"We’re kind of mad they smacked us last time at their place," said Rose. Ahh yes, the revenge factor, Derrick Rose certainly borrowed that trait from Michael Jordan. The Chicago Bulls will look to avenge one of their eight losses on the season in Philadelphia. This time they'll have Luol Deng, and this time I expect them to come out prepared.

The 76ers are reeling a bit. They've lost six of their last eight, largely on the road, largely to good teams. That said, the Bulls are [obviously] a good team and should come out with focus, passion, and energy. The 76ers are an unselfish team that moves the ball and can score from all five positions on the court. They're athletic, and they defend. They'll likely play a lot of small ball, so the Bulls should beat them on the glass something fierce.

Can the Bulls press their size advantage?

The 76ers give up a ton of offensive rebounds, and Chicago is one of the best offensive rebounding teams in the NBA. The Bulls will hit the glass hard looking to press their size advantage while Philly will look to leak out and hurt the Bulls for pushing too hard on the glass. Philly will look to counter the Bulls second chance points with fast break points; who can pull off the bigger advantage?

Joakim "the trap buster" Noah

Noah has played at a high level recently. He's moved the ball and scored well. Noah's the most likely outlet on a Derrick Rose trap, and the 76ers will trap frequently. How well will Noah play out of the trap? That could determine the game. If Noah gives the Bulls another 12/12/5 type game, then Philly will be sufficiently punished for overcommitting on Rose.

The Cavaliers tried to overcommitt on Rose, and the Bulls destroyed them for it, however, Philly recovers much faster, and there's no guarantee Chicago will remain as hot behind the three point line.

Cover up those three point shooters

Jodie Meeks, Andre Iguodala, Louis Williams, and Jrue Holiday are all shooting well (38%+) from behind the three point line. The 76ers will frequently have three shooters on the floor at once, so the Bulls need to be careful to run guys off the three point line into long two point jumpers instead.

Big game for Boozer

This is the type of game built for Boozer to thrive in. There is no shot blocking big man to bother him nor does Elton Brand have size or athleticism on him. Carlos should have a field day down low if the Bulls feed him in the low post and his roll game should be difficult for Brand to stop. I expect a big performance out of Carlos who's struggled coming out of the all-star break.

How does Derrick Rose respond to the trap?

Can he split the double team? Will Rip Hamilton and Luol Deng cause enough defensive shift with their off the ball movement to help give Rose room? Can he utilize the pick and roll? As noted above, both Boozer and Noah should have quality matchups to exploit against the 76ers, but if they fall short can Rose carry the Bulls against wave after wave of athletic perimeter defenders?

Derrick's a superstar, and we've seen MVP style Derrick Rose post all-star break. He's back to playing with his full level of athleticism, punishing teams with his speed and power. Regardless of what his teammates do and regardless of what the 76ers throw at him, I expect Derrick Rose to go off. I don't think he'll let this team lose to the 76ers two games in a row.

Prediction? Bulls win

I predict the Bulls win enough to not bother typing a prediction in most games, but a road game against a very good team is no gimmie. That said, I expect Chicago, led by Rose, to come out with focus and fire to put this one away.

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  • Get your popcorn ready!

    That said I have no idea who wins. But back in the day Scottie used to call these measuring stick games. I would say this is that even though the Sixers have a lesser record I think this is potential playoff match up. A real ass game.

    But you think this is the type of game built for Boozer to thrive in Doug? Looking at his last game against them he only scored 9 points with 9 rebs and 2 turnovers.

    I think that this is a game more built for Taj Gibson because the Sixers wings are so damn athletic that Boozer may struggle defending them to the point of either getting pulled by Thibs or foul trouble.

    We'll see.

    I'd personally like to see the Bulls use a lineup of...
    Noah
    Deng
    Brewer
    Rip
    Rose

    This is one of the lineups I'd like to see against the Heat and maybe the Sixers. The teams with athletic wings. I think this could help balance out your defense with better help speed and keep their offense well balanced.

  • In reply to souleater7:

    I should put it this way, this is a game Boozer can make or break you.

    There's no reason he shouldn't be able to dominate the 76ers defense, but if he can't, then he'll kill the Bulls with his own bad defense. Similar to an offensive rebound vs get back on defense debate, the Bulls will see quickly whether Boozer is beating up on the 76ers or beating up on them.

  • San Antonio is an older slower team that Bulls matchup with better than Philly. So while SA was a very nice win, this Philly game is more menacing, imo. Philly's athletic wings combined with Doug Collins' superb tactical coaching will present a significant challenge to our Bulls.

    Bulls must bring high energy and intensity from the start! Thibs must manage minutes and matchups wisely and deftly.

    Tonight's Philly game is the first of 4 games in 5 nights which will certainly be a measuring stick for the Bulls. March will be an exciting and competitive month!

  • In reply to Edward:

    "So while SA was a very nice win, this Philly game is more menacing,imo. Philly's athletic wings combined with Doug Collins' superb tactical coaching will present a significant challenge to our Bulls." Typical so-called Bulls fan reaction to what they term significant games.

    First of all this is a game whereby rejects are hoping to make a statement. The rejects are Doug Collins and Andre Iguodala. Collins is still hurt and out for revenge after Jerry Reinsdorf rejected his attempts at a comeback as Bulls coach, and Iguodala or "Iggy," as some idiots on this blog love to refer to him, as a product of the Chicago area, has been on an unending crusade to worm his way into the Bulls team via a trade.
    But guess what? It won't happen. Iggy's wild, overenthusiastic game won't get him to be considered a Bull, and Collins' vengeful approach to every Bulls game won't get him a victory this afternoon. The Bulls are better and Thibs is a better coach.

  • In reply to SlamDunk:

    Obviously you dont know anything about basketball, Philly has and probably will continue to dominate the Bulls because they are more aggressive, faster and possess more scorers then we do. I keep trying to tell Bulls fans we dont have enough heart on this team to win a championship, just role players. Nobody besides Rose has that I will not lose attitude by any means. I pray they make a trade before the deadline otherwise unless Miami gets injuried we have no Chance. It's basically Rose versus the Heat otherwise

  • In reply to jclass62:

    No need to remind me jclass62, I have been commenting on this Bulls team for the longest that if they dont do something to improve this team this year that the Bulls wont beat Miami, probably the Sixers, Indiana, or I will even throw in the Knocks, cause all of the mentioned teams have more than one scoring threat and the Bulls only have Rose and are trying to ride him to his wheels come off. This Bulls team is offensively challenged and not going anywhere til they get Rose somemore help. Defense can only carry a team so far, a team has to be able to score when needed and not rely on one player, and a point guard at that.

  • In reply to Reese1:

    Excuse typing error, I meant to say the Knicks.

  • In reply to SlamDunk:

    Gee, thanks for your insightful analysis.
    "Rejects hoping to make a statement?" Did it occur to you that Philly has won the last 3 games against Bulls? And the first half tonight?

    Collins is no reject. He's a former No. 1 overall pick of Philly who played his entire career there making all-star team 3 times in 8 seasons. He's one of the best basketball minds in the NBA.

    Teams with athletic wings give Bulls trouble. Is this news to you? Deng/Hamilton/Korver have a combined 2 points for the 1st half.

    Bulls are lucky to be down only 6 points at half. Philly playing excellent defense. My sense is Rose will have to be superman for Bulls to win this game. But Rose really needs some scoring help.
    GO BULLS!

  • In reply to SlamDunk:

    Sounds like you are from Philly, and had a bad cheese steak, Iggy.

  • Boston just showed us how not to close a game.

  • Everytime I hear that so-called Bulls Fan, Michael Wilbon, say "Miami is the best team in the league," i have to restrain myself from hurling a brick at the TV. What a fraud this guy is!

  • In reply to SlamDunk:

    Wilbon is only telling it like it is tho, Miami is the best team in the league and the Bulls if they meet the Heat in the playoffs will not beat the Heat in a seven game series not with the team as presently constructed. Bulls need to make some trades badly, they can't even beat Philly which is troubling.

  • Thats the differene between a fan and a realist. We all hope, wish, want, pray for the Bulls to win but I cant honestly say this is the best team in the league healthy or not because we never know which Deng, Brewer, Korver, Noah, Boozer or Watson that is coming to play. This team cant even score without Rose

  • In reply to jclass62:

    Apparently, the sleep walking Deng showed up tonight, again.

    Did somebody slip this guy a roofy at the All Star game.

  • Philly is out hustling and out-defending Bulls tonight. Notice how Philly is fending Rose and other Bulls all the way out to half court. No open looks or open 3s for Bulls tonight.

    But I think Bulls have taken Philly's best shot now and survived. Time for a Bulls run.

  • Taj and Noah need to develop jumpers.

  • If somebody other than Rose shows up, the Bulls can win this game. But, even Taj is getting schooled on defense today by both Vuvevic and Young. The problem is if these guys play so hard on defense(other than Rose) and are not the most talented offensive guys...there is obviously a scoring drought. Deng better get his 4th quarter San Antonio game back for the 4th quarter

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    Nice call. Deng with two 3s to open the 4th!

  • In reply to Edward:

    Actually, Deng with 8 points in 4 minutes of the 4th after being scoreless through 3 quarters.

  • Noah making the mistake again of over-helping. I know he is guarding Boozer's guy. But, Young and Bosh are same for us. Noah should just not do the helping when he is against these good offensive guys

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    Schaumburgfan, you can't find anything to criticize Noah about in this game, right? Tonight you saw the two most valuable players on the Bulls in action, Derek Rose and Joakim Noah!

  • In reply to schaumburgfan:

    No, Noah should not be forced to cover Roberto Duran(feet of stone)boozers man, precisely because he is the primary and best help defender on the team.

  • Good win by the Bulls, their offense still sucks, Rose has to do too much but good revenge win against a up and coming Sixer team. They certainly won't be a easy out come playoff time.

  • In reply to Reese1:

    Philly is certainly a worthy opponent.
    Bulls had Superman, Philly did not. That's the difference.

    Several Bulls stepped up and contributed in the 4th - Deng, CJ.
    But Agreed, Bulls certainly need more offense. Nearly every possession we wonder where the offense will come from.

    Rose and Deng both play all 24 minutes of 2nd half.

  • In reply to Edward:

    Bulls could uses one more scoring guard that for sure.

  • In reply to Reese1:

    yeah it looks like we still have the same issue namely ROSE DOUBLE-TEAMS. when Rose is locked by 2 defenders, bulls don't know what to do. That's why the Heat beat us. They sent Lebron and Haslem late in the 4th quarter.

    Thibs has to fix that problem if not it is going to hurt us during the next ECF. Watson should be the PG in those kind of situations.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    Like i said 3 minutes before you, watson should bring the ball up the floor. move rose to the 2 guard spot.

  • In reply to rob32:

    yeah exactly in order to prevent double-teams. Also Rose has to give away to pass quickly when he is doubled.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    As far as trapping Rose goes, I don't see why anyone was worried by that. Yeah I'm sure people remember the turnovers and bad passes but you can't ignore the times it lead to easy open shots ... all in all I think trapping Rose is not a win for the other team in the long run, it's a play that they can maybe break out for surprise value but if they do it every time down the court the Bulls showed they know how to score off it.

  • In reply to Shakes:

    opponents might not double Rose the whole game but it helped them to break our offense late in the 4th quarter when the game is tight. And it enough to make us lose the game most of all in playoffs ( remember the heat ).

  • In reply to deewaves:

    That's true. It seems like "Rose trapping" happens only when it is necessary for the other team like late 4th quarters or when they are trailing. IMO, Thibs is relying too much on Rose's ability to break the trap rather than try a few other things to break it. Although, he was screaming at Noah once during a "trap" turnover. I am not sure if the CJ bringing the ball up is a great way to beat the trap either. If Rose struggles with his physical ability, CJ will definitely turn it over. They need some out of the box thinking on this. Maybe, Thibs has it by watching all the tape this summer and will unleash it during the Miami playoffs.

  • In reply to deewaves:

    I think using it at the end of the game like the 76ers did is a desperation technique. It's like fouling at the end of the game: it's not about stopping a team from scoring, it's about limiting the amount of clock they can use. By trapping Rose you make him pass it to the other guys playing 4 on 3 and that usually results in a quick dunk, open three or a turnover. Either way you're only letting the Bulls use 10 seconds per trip.

    Really I think what the Bulls were doing is the right way to play it: try to take the points the other team are giving you, even if it risks turnovers.

  • In reply to Reese1:

    The 76ers are the best defensive team in the league, and they hardly turned the ball over giving the Bulls no fast break chances. Despite the Bulls having to play half court ball they shot a very good percentage ... on another night when Philly is a bit sloppier with the ball the Bulls score 100+ and it's a borderline blowout.

  • I hope thibs continues to play watson more minutes along side rose especially in the 4th quarter. opponents are gonna see this game and start trapping rose at half court,taking the ball out of rose hands. the sixers started doing it too late in the game. watson brings a second ball handler on the floor and thibs could just let watson bring the ball up the floor to avoid the half court traps.

  • In reply to rob32:

    Yes, adding CJ Watson to respond to the trap was a nice adjustment by Thibs. That trap was giving Bulls problems. And having another shooter on the floor helped too - he had two important buckets in the 4th.

  • In reply to rob32:

    +100. Watson has to be the PG in the 4th quarter to prevent Rose from getting doubled once he reachs the halhcourt. We lost against the heat because we didnt know what to do when Rose is doubled by James and Haslem !

  • It seems I'm posting on that other blog that bans people they don't like because that person has a honest opinion that doesn't fall in line with their's?

  • In reply to SlamDunk:

    What goes around comes around. You treat people like shit then shit will find you. Just stay loyal to Doug he seems like a fair person who lets people speak about their Bulls.

    It's a shame Blogabull is run by a complete asshole.

  • I do not wanna see the Sixers in the playoffs.

  • If the Bulls had someone like Eric Gordon they'd be unstoppable.

  • Bulls need to do something with either Korver or Brewer see if they can get another scorer in here.

  • In reply to souleater7:

    we should trade for beasley

  • The east playoffs are going to be a bitch this year, the Bulls will have their work cut out for them just getting to the finals. Who is going to be an easy out, Indy, Philly, Atlanta, Orlando, the Knicks, the Celts.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    Can't say I rate the first round matchup as hard ... Knicks and Celtics are both the type of team that should be disposed of in no more than 5.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    Agreed. I don't see any really easy playoff opponents. Now that the Knicks have emerged their are 8 legitimate playoff teams in the East. It's going to be a tough battle to the ECF. It's not a given.

  • 1) 96 pts is not too bad against a fast defensive team. Giving up 91 is not so hot. And getting out-rebounded on a night when Noah himself has 18? With Deng and Rip getting only 8 pts each, I guess we'll take the W.
    2) Up for a trade? How about getting Howard fairly cheap with no extension and then signing Deron Williams and Howard this summer? Would have to amnesty Boozer, but could it work with the cap? Any experts on the cap?

  • So how did everyone feel when CJ sprained his ankle knowing John Lucas was the next PG off the bench? Mike James is off the roster and we are not sure CJ will play against Indiana on Monday.

    imo, it was a mistake to guarantee John Lucas when Mike James was clearly the better player and one who could face playoff competition. Lucas cannot stay on the court with playoff teams.

    This exact situation (CJ injured, Mike James released, Lucas the 2nd PG) cost us the Miami loss in January. Lucas cost Bulls 10 points in just 3 minutes court time, and Rose had to play 45 minutes that game.

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