A missing piece to the Bulls' executing Tom Thibodeau's offensive philosophy of using defensive stops and force turnovers to run the floor and create easy buckets in transition. Joakim Noah is not only the team's best rebounder, but their best big outlet passer.
While speaking to the media on a practice day, Thibodeau noted how Noah's return will contribute to more efficient offense by igniting more breaks, K.C. Johnson reported Tuesday at the Chicago Tribune:
Of all the myriad reasons the Bulls are excited for Joakim Noah's imminent return, coach Tom Thibodeau offered perhaps the biggest.
"I want to pick up the pace," Thibodeau said.
Between Noah's rebounding and ability to run the floor, the Bulls theoretically should alter the trend that has taken root since Noah succumbed to thumb surgery. Entering Tuesday, the Bulls have had single-digit fast-break points in 15 of the 28 games Noah has missed.
"We can't have Derrick (Rose) be the only guy on the break," Thibodeau said. "We have to consistently run the floor. We did it well early in the season. And we've sort of slowed down as a team."
CSNChicago.com also posted some cool video -- clearly, for nerds like me -- of Noah practicing his post game with Brian Scalabrine:
Noah expressed concern with his conditioning and he's a bit less agile. Also, seeming better with his left, the video shows there's probably still a degree of tenderness limiting how effective he can finish with the dominant right hand on which he had surgery. But working out like this definitely has him on a fast track to being an impact pretty fast.
Noah is scheduled to return to the rotation Nov. 23 in Toronto, the Bulls' first game after All-Star Weekend.