Joakim Noah brought the energy and the rest of the Bulls followed suit. His 23 points, 21 boards, and 11 blocks gave him his second triple double of the season. If I'm not mistaken, Noah now leads all active Bulls in triple doubles with three (or at least triple doubles in a Bulls uniform).
Noah's a rare breed of player that could actually have a shot at a quadruple double, though he didn't have a big assist night last night, he's now logged individual triple doubles with points/rebounds/assists and points/rebounds/blocks.
The win broke a two game losing streak for Chicago ahead of three though games coming up. The Bulls play the Nets Saturday in Chicago followed by road games in Indiana and San Antonio. The next three games will be tough to get for Chicago against such high quality competition while battling so many injuries.
Rip Hamilton was a scratch from the 76ers game and while Rip isn't necessarily one of the Bulls most important cogs, once you're already missing Gibson, his absence still hurts the team which would need to play small more frequently and has to go deeper into the bench or play the starters even more minutes. Marco Belinelli started in place of Rip but was unable to capture the 'starting Marco' quality of play he had last time Rip was out, at least for this game.
Tom Thibodeau wisely gave the team the day off today to recuperate before facing the Nets on Saturday. While all Bulls fans (including myself) have fears that Tom will burn the team out, it's worth noting that he has given the team off days when he knows they're tired and beat up like right now which shows a better balance than Scott Skiles had shown.
Welcome aboard Lou Amundson
The Bulls look likely to sign sign Lou Amundson to a 10 day contract and have just enough salary cap room to sign him for the rest of the season if they choose to do so. Amundson would be a welcome addition to the team with Gibson out as he's a high energy reserve big man.
Amundson is hardly a stud, and if he was he clearly wouldn't be available to be signed for a 10 day contract. However, he is a guy who can chew up some minutes without getting absolutely destroyed like Vlad and Nazr have done so far this season. Amundson was a guy I had hoped the Bulls would have considered as a reserve a few years ago when he played reasonably well in a limited role with Phoenix.
He's a career 10/10/2 (blocks) per 36 minute guy, so he's been able to contribute while on the court though he struggled to do anything for the Timberwolves this season, the worst of his career. Hopefully, he'll find a way to contribute for Chicago until Taj Gibson returns and perhaps afterwards.
Amundson would be eligible to play in the playoffs for Chicago should they opt to keep him the whole season.