Jimmy Butler is officially listed as week to week with turf toe and will not travel with the team on their west coast trip. Theoretically that only rules him out for a few games as the Bulls won't be on the west coast the entire circus trip, but "week to week" certainly sounds like an injury that will leave him sidelined for awhile.
As I noted this morning, the bench play has been a strength for the team thus far, but they haven't had to dig deep into it yet. With Butler likely missing a minimum of two weeks [my guess], the Bulls will get plenty of opportunity to see what Tony Snell can do with some minutes.
It's also possible that Thibodeau chooses to grind guys into dust with minutes or leans on Marquis Teague as backup PG with Hinrich then taking over the SG duties more full time and Dunleavy playing alongside both Deng and Hinrich [though he'd be the SF really in either lineup].
Either way, the Bulls are going to have to go past their typical eight and a half man rotation with the latest injury, and they're going to have to do it for an extended period of time. What can make the situation considerably worse is if there's any further injury on the team forcing the Bulls to dig deeper.
That said, with injury comes opportunity. Snell and Teague haven't looked like anything special so far, but neither guy has really had any extended burn or chance to play regularly. If Thibodeau can quickly settle on one guy to pick up the majority of the slack and stick with him through the struggles then we might see some real growth.
Marquis Teague frequently looks a bit spastic, but he's definitely played much better the couple times he's had consistent minutes, and Tony Snell would likely benefit from some consistent minutes as well. Whether either guy can play well enough to convince Thibs to give them that shot is another question all together though.
As for the team, they first three games of the road western road trip just got a bunch tougher, but I'm interested to see how the team steps up.
In reality, we still haven't seen the team play particularly well [or even close] yet. Derrick Rose has been a border line disaster, Joakim Noah's underperformed by quite a bit, and the team has still clawed it's way to a 6-3 start. If Rose can get on track, the Bulls can easily compensate for the loss of Butler and still rack up plenty of wins.
That said, the margin for Rose to struggle and still win likely got a bit thinner as the Bulls will be hurt on both ends of the court. I'm looking forward to seeing how the team responds.