Horny Notes: May 6, 2011 -- Bulls' Dominant Rebounding, Crawford's Bad D & Big Mouth, Rose's Sprained Ankle,

Horny Notes: May 6, 2011 -- Bulls' Dominant Rebounding, Crawford's Bad D & Big Mouth, Rose's Sprained Ankle,
  • Jamal Crawford had the nerve to say after Game 2: "If that's their best shot, we're in good shape." (K.C. Johnson and Fred Mitchell, Chicago Tribune):

    "That's his opinion," Derrick Rose responded. "To us, that wasn't our best game at all."

  • Powerade put up a sweet billboard in the West Loop, commemorating Rose's MVP honor (Luis Arroyave, ChiTrib):
    rose mvp west loop billboard.jpg
  • Rose has a Grade 2 ankle sprain, sources told David Kaplan before Game 2 (CSNChicago.com). This conflicts with reports that Rose practiced without swelling on Tuesday (Jason Kirk, SBN Atlanta). Given that Rose's jumpshot's kinda' sucked since mid-January, this preventing him from getting to the line since spraining the ankle in Game 4 of the first round is still troubling.
  • Rose abused the Hawks with the pick n' roll in Game 2. He was 7-for-12, scoring 15 of his 25 points using the PNR, scoring 1.25 points per possession (ESPN Stats/Info).
  • Al Horford's being forced to brick jumpers or put the ball on the floor and we should expect the same for the rest of the series (Jason Walker, Peachtree Hoops). Therefore, we should expect him to stay bad on the offensive end in this series. Horford's averaged 7.5 PPG on 7-for-19 (.368) shooting in the two games of the series. He shot a ridiculous 2-for-10 on long-2s with zero attempts at the rim in Game 2 alone (Hoopdata).
  • Taj Gibson's played through pain that can't be cured in the trainer's room. After the deaths of three friends late last summer, his grandfather was diagnosed with cancer in February (Melissa Isaacson, ESPNChicago.com). Joakim Noah recently cited that Taj had been through a lot this year, but his grief wasn't public. Sad that a great kid has to endure so much at the same time. Hopefully, he's opening up more, confronting his feelings, and healing. Hopefully, the game continues to be a positive part of Taj's life because after long days, a rough breakup, and loss in my personal life last year, I can definitely say he's contributed to a slice of my happiness.

    No wonder when Tom Thibodeau wanted leadership, he said to Taj before sending him into Game 2, " 'Go out there and try to make a play that will help inspire your teammates,' " according to Taj (Vaughn McClure, ChiTrib).

  • The Bulls outwardly not worried about offensive problems as long as they stops is "obviously a team mantra," Isaacson noted after Game 2.
  • Kyle Korver played pretty good D in Game 1, as I noted in my recap. Jamal Crawford just hit ridiculous shots, but really had to work for the buckets (Rob Mahoney, Off the Dribble):
  • Of course, just as Crawford's insane shot-making isn't repeatable against that same defense, Korver defending like that may be less repeatable. I see a very productive summer in Korver's future. For the first time in his career, he's bought into the value of being an adequate defender.

  • The Bulls' rebounding domination in Game 2 was a pretty swift kick in the Hawks' nuts. "Joakim Noah, [Carlos Boozer] -- those guys are animals," Marvin Williams said. "They know it. The league knows it. We know it." (Ken Sugiura, Atlanta Journal-Constitution).
  • Crawford pretty much sucked at defending Derrick Rose in Game 2 (Zach Lowe, Point Forward). Of course, that's to be expected, but now we have data and reason to be giddy that Larry Drew might repeat this.

    On the other hand, Jeff Teague's been amazing. I'm extremely impressed -- not just by his athleticism, but -- with his patience and determination to make smart decisions. No surprise that Kirk Hinrich's been coaching his ear off. "He's always in my ear, every timeout, telling me things I can do, how I can guard Derrick Rose on a certain play or what he sees on offense, plays to call, things like that," Teague said (Sugiura).

  • Drew wants Josh Smith taking less jumpshots after watching him hit a Rose-esque 39% of his long-2s this regular season. "I want him flying all over the place," Drew said. "I don't want him sitting out there just shooting jump shots and trying to make plays off the dribble." (Segiura)

    He's shooting .256 (10-for-39) in his last three games and .186 (5-for-27) on long-2s in all playoff games this year, bricking all eight in this series (Hoopdata). He acknowledges this "slump" and noted a confidence lull:

    Hopefully, he gets his confidence back, so he doesn't stop shooting.

  • "Eight seconds" told us a lot about Rose that made a lot of people basically fall in love with him forever, Holly Mackenzie wrote (The Basketball Jones).

    Those eight seconds were eight necessary moments -- Joy, peace, pride, recollection, recognition, honesty, gratitude, and love. So much love. Eight seconds that felt like a lifetime, eight seconds that showed 22 years worth of respect, honor and unconditional love.

    While Rose spoke for four minutes and 10 seconds -- a lifetime of conversation for him -- he said all that he needed to with those eight seconds. His voice crackling with emotion, Rose spoke the name of the most important person in the room yesterday.

    Brenda Rose.

    Thanks, Holly. You just made me cry again.

  • J.R. Smith, Marco Belinelli, and Marcus Thornton seem like plausible SG upgrades for the offseason, Morton Stieg Jensen noted. He added O.J. Mayo, but I think he's too small to be able to sidestep his defensive liability, even if he were to improve (Bulls Confidential). Personally, I'd add Wilson Chandler to that shortlist and say he's probably the best fit -- 6-foot-8, can play three positions, great defender without anything resembling much defensive coaching, young, great work ethic that can be shaped into a better-than-Deng two-way player, IMO.

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  • Wilson Chandler would be really nice....like you said, solid offensive play, can hit the 3, great athleticism and solid defender if he needs to be. Big guy too.

  • I like chandler, but do you really think he could be better than deng or did I read it wrong?

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