I discuss the Cavaliers recent moves and the major questions entering training camp.
Bulls Beat #338 - Camp kick off
Great podcast, Doug. You are already in midseason form. Can't wait for the season to begin.
A request: Could you please update the "Bulls Tweets" tab? I always check it out when I visit your site. Thanks!!
I've updated it.
Removed Deng, Robinson, Boozer, Belinelli
Added McDermott, Mirotic, Gasol, Bulls_Jay, The Bulls Show
Let me know if you think anyone is missing that should be on there.
Here are some more:
Cameron Baristow @cbairstow41
Aaron Brooks @Thirty2zero
Nazr Mohammed @NazrMohammed
Tony Snell @TonySnell20
These two are unverified:
Mike Dunleavy @MikeDunleavyJr
Kirk Hinrich @TheRealHinrich
Also, Luol Deng is still there.
While none of us really know what kind of a player Mirotic will be, you almost evaluated him as a wing player in the Reggie Miller, Ray Allen, Kyle Korver role. Whatever he is, he is clearly not that. Although until I actually see how slow he is, I will continue to hold out hope that he can play some small forward.
The one point that you made which I totally disagree with is Mirotic's ability to take people off the dribble. You basically think that he has none. However, from the video that I've seen it looks like one of his strengths, at least as a power forward. Taking opposing bigs off the dribble seems like a big part of his game, a part that he himself said he likes, especially since he is such a good long range shooter requiring defenses to play him tight all the way out to the 3 point line.
It may not be saying much, but it wouldn't surprise me if Mirotic is relatively more athletic(at his respective position) than McBucketts. Until I see them both with my own eyes, it is still just a guess, but it won't take all that long to figure out what these guys can be.
You(and most people commenting on the Bulls) seem to be higher on McBucketts than Mirotic. In fact most people focus quite a bit of attention on McBucketts and refer to Mirotic as almost an after thought. I find this interesting because the consensus among draft experts seems to be that Mirotic would have been the 4rth pick in this past draft while McBucketts went 11th.
This is the most excited I've been about a new season since 2010 or 11, and the most excited about our rookies since Rose. I am really looking forward to seeing both of these guys play in the NBA.
I don't think the consensus was that he'd be #4. I heard one guy say that. i'm not sure I'm buying that though. Hopefully I am wrong. Hopefully he's much better than I expect.
You're probably right that he can take four's off the dribble more than I credited on the podcast. Almost 50% of his shots are threes, but he does get to the FT line a lot.
Looks like one of my comments got eaten, but I was wrong about some numbers in it, so it's probably a good thing ;)
I'm not sure I buy Mirotic would have been #4. I think I heard one guy say that, I'd hardly say it was a consensus. I've heard others say top 10 a couple times, but I'm not sure where I'd put him.
He doesn't shoot as many threes as I thought and takes a ton of FTs each game which is a positive.
I certainly wouldn't be surprised if he's a great player, I'm not sure that I have overall more faith in Mirotic than McDermott, but I do believe McDermott is more likely to have an immediate impact due to the guys he'll have to beat out to get on the court.
@BigWay: You are correct with Mirotic taking 4's off the dribble, but 3's could be a problem. Also his IQ is just so clever that he could trick a lot of 3's and catch them off guard. I watched his game and he can sprint down the floor pretty fast without the ball and fake a lot of players out when he has the ball. The average player's brains can't figure out exactly what's going to happen when the ball is in Mirotic's hand. Because he's so talented, defenders have to wonder; is he going to pass, shoot, or dribble past the defender for a layup? I personally have a lot of confidence in him getting minutes and making a difference. He'll be our dark horse because all eyes will be on everyone but him.
While I agree with your assessment of Mirotic's skill set, I also tend to agree with Doug that he might make less of an impact than McBuckett's simply because there are too many quality players in front of Mirotic at his position, and there are way too few(as in none) quality players in front of McBucketts at his position.
I hope M & M both contend for ROY - in fact, they can share the award! Or come in one and two. It could happen.
Will the Bulls have a better D this year? Yes. They will still have Noah, Taj, and Butler. Certainly Gasol will play more D than Boozer. Plus, Rose plays some D.
So, if their O moves into the top 10, they can win it all!
Great post, Doug. I also hope McBuckets is our starting 2 or 3. I also think that Mirotic's style of play is very similar to Kevin Love, but after watching a few euro tapes, I think he is a bit faster than Love and have the ability to take the 4's off the dribble. This is going to be an interesting season for the Bulls, which I think we are the best team on the east if everyone is healthy. Cavs have a lot of ground to become the best team: new coach, losing franchise, new players that never played together, no low post threats, poor defense. The Bulls have one of the best coaches, winning franchise, same core players, best low post/ big man rotation for the entire NBA, elite defense. If we stay healthy, even if Rose is playing at 90% from his best year, I think we are a number 1 team heads down.
I don't think the obstacles the Cavs have in their way will be significant by the time they get to the playoffs. Is it possible they get off to a slow(er) start?
Perhaps, but I find that unlikely too just because the East is so lousy that there won't be a lot of teams they can't annihilate strictly on talent.
The cohesion will build up enough over the course of a season that by playoff time the rest of that won't matter. The poor interior defense is probably the biggest problem, but I think even that will be overstated.
Quite simply, talent wise, this big three is probably as good as the big three in Miami when they first got together, but the rest of the team has way more depth and talent than the Miami Heat ever did. Plus they have some young athletic talent and not just aging vets.
On O, the Cavs should be as good as Miami 4 years ago.
On D, no way!
IMO, Bulls-Cavs become a premier rivalry for years.
I hope this podcast didn't throw too much cold water on the Tony-Snell-is-going-to-be-a-starter group. Lol.
We won't know about Snell for a month or two. Even if he becomes a decent 2nd SG both ways, we'll take that. Then trade later for the starting SG unless McDermott can handle the role.
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