Chicago Bulls come out winners with World Cup play

Chicago Bulls come out winners with World Cup play

With Derrick Rose emerging from the World Cup healthy, the debate is likely over on whether or not it was a good idea for him to play. Rose now has a six week head start on removing some rust which can only be viewed as a good thing.

Despite his poor play, he's happy with where he's at. He's happy with his game speed. He thinks he's just a few adjustments away from being the player he once was. That's great news for Chicago, and even if he's not correct the fact that he's coming away from the experience happy, healthy, and confident is better than having not gone.

However, Derrick's opportunity to play some real basketball is but one of the benefits the Bulls reaped from our national team.

An overlooked benefit is the impact it will have on Tom Thibodeau

Derrick Rose isn't the only one who got to perform amongst great peers. Tom Thibodeau got to coach with another all time great head coach in Mike Krzyzewski. Another great college head coach in Jim Boeheim, and he had the opportunity to scout and analyze International basketball in depth to pick up any wrinkles for his own schemes on either side of the ball.

I'm sure for a basketball junkie like Thibodeau, the experience was quite enlightening and that he soaked up every ounce of new information possible and will begin incorporating it into his own plans.

Team USA likely benefited significantly from Thibodeau's defensive schemes as well. Despite not having the most dominant team overall, this team dominated its competition like no team has since the original dream teams in 92/96. Even with basketball catching up around the globe and Team USA not sending their best, they routed the competition even when their shots weren't falling.

I'm guessing Tom Thibodeau has quite a bit to do with that.

Recruiting, we're not good at it but...

Beyond Tom and Derrick's personal journeys. Both player and coach had a chance to create bonds with other players who were there. Maybe nothing comes of that, but maybe if one of these guys is forcing their way out of a bad situation they think that playing for the Chicago Bulls seems like a better idea than it did prior to the tournament.

I have no doubts that Tom Thibodeau left a great impression on all of the Team USA players with his preparedness and coaching talent. Derrick Rose is an introverted guy and didn't play well, but if he bounces back in the NBA what he showed every other star there is that he's willing to share the spotlight, set other guys up, and doesn't need to hog the glory.

Odds are against this being a big deal for Chicago, but every chance major Chicago basketball pieces get to bond with big name players in the NBA and create friendships is a great opportunity that could pay dividends down the road.

Spain's loss also likely motivates the hell out of Pau Gasol

Gasol looked outstanding all tournament. Heck, he might have been the best player in the tournament even in the game where Spain was eliminated. The loss hurts but will keep him motivated and hungry as well.

We also got to see that when properly motivated, Pau still has it. He didn't play well the past couple of seasons but was stuck on a team of poor players with no shot to win in a tough conference. Bulls fans have to be feeling at least a smidge better about Gasol now than prior to the tournament.

Chicago will get the benefit of an even more engaged fan base.

The Bulls didn't quite have the huge headline off-season that fans hoped for. It was always a long shot to get Carmelo Anthony or Kevin Love anyway, but it still left an initial sting, especially Love joining LeBron in Cleveland.

However, much like 2010 when the Bulls missed the big fish, they made quality smaller moves that should put together an outstanding team. No, the Bulls won't be the favorite and for the "win a championship or I hate my life" crowd this season will is more likely than not to end in disappointment.

What Chicago did is put themselves in the discussion. They're ready to make a big jump forward again after a couple of down years. They have a shot, albeit a small one (to win Ben Stein's money?) to win a championship. That's as much as was realistic. They maintained flexibility for the future, plenty of good assets, and will have a chance to make a trade if a big name player becomes available.

After the initial disappointment of losing out on the big name players wore off and looking at what the Bulls pulled off became more clear, the fans I talk to regularly seem awfully upbeat about having a good season. They're all talking Bulls again. A surprisingly large number of fans were watching the World Cup just to see Derrick play.

I'd guess the Bulls had more fans watching the World Cup than any other fan base. Derrick may not have played great but most fans I've talked to don't seem about as worried as Derrick. The vibe for the season is great. The city is primed for Chicago Bulls basketball again.

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  • Players that I thought meshed well with Derrick during the tournament: Klay Thompson, Rudy Gay, and Demarcus Cousins. I'm intrigued with the idea of any of them playing for the Bulls.

  • In reply to jumpmanjay:

    Even though he didn't play a great role, seeing Gay on the team made me wonder what Bulls fans would think of acquiring/adding Gay to this current Bulls roster. I know that it is essentially not even a consideration for the Bulls given Gay's salary this season, but he is a free agent next summer. So theoretically would Bulls fans want Gay on this Bulls team going forward. I was in the camp that always preferred Gay to Deng, but maybe that was simply a case of the grass being greener on the other side of the hill that I don't watch on a daily basis? If Mirotic is a hit right away, would you trade Taj for him?

  • In reply to BigWay:

    Hard to imagine wanting Gay for me unless his next contract was in the 12 million per year range. Even then, think he'd be a bad fit with Rose since neither of htem are three point shooters.

  • In reply to BigWay:

    You asked, "If Mirotic is a hit right away, would you trade Taj for him [Gay I assume]?"

    Probably not, but it might depend on how the team is jelling. We know what Taj is, and he is cheap at $8 million per for 3 more years. Taj should be excellent off the bench, getting decent minutes, and he plays on both ends.

    However, he could become a key piece in a trade for a star. There may be several teams interested in trading a decent SG for Taj and Bairstow, for example. I would only do that if it gave the Bulls a real solid shot at the title. But if M and M are both killing it, and Snell is not, that trade could put the Bulls over the top!

  • In reply to jumpmanjay:

    I think Kay Thompson would be a great fit together. They seemed to have had great chemistry. I wonder when his contract is up.

  • A very positive article, Doug. I think the benefits out of the tournament for Rose and Thibs plus the talents added to the roster will make the Bulls very exciting to watch this season. I am looking forward to it !!!

  • Good article I like how he point out the benefits of playing in the world cup with Rose, Thibs and Gasol. Rose getting to develop relationships with other elite players, like Chicago talent Davis, what it might lead to in the future hopefully. Thibs working with another coach and hopefully open Thibs mind to better distribution of minutes among all his players. Gasol getting the fire back into him playing with a good team that has a great chance to win it all.

  • Ideas for near future posts.....

    Luvabulls tryout update
    Benny the Bull interview
    D-league Analysis
    Reggie Rose watch

  • On another topic, it looks like we have another SG officially signed off: E’Twaun Moore. Decent shooter with decent defense. From the scout, this guy can create his own shot. Nice pick, but wondering if there is any time for him to play with the current roster.

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