Before the season began, Derrick Rose emphatically expressed his excitement when the Bulls signed Marco Belinelli. Not a lot of fans wanted Marco, they called him a poor man's Kyle Korver, which is not true. There is a big difference in how Korver and Belinelli play, one's a shooter and the other is a scorer. Last night against the Nets, Marco proved that there is a big difference between the two players.
In the absence of Rip Hamilton, Marco has finally started to get into a rhythm and is putting up 18ppg in the last seven games. If you analyze the way he plays compared to how he started off the season, you'll see the biggest difference is confidence. The first few games of the season, the ball looked like a time-bomb in Belinelli's hand. He never wanted the ball in his hand, nor did he want to shoot it. To make matters worse, Thibodeau had even less confidence in Maro than Marco did in himself. Jimmy Butler started to slowly sneak up and started consuming Belinelli's minutes and shortly after, we barely saw the Italian guard on the floor.
When one door closes, another one opens. In the Bulls case, Marco Belinelli has opened his door after Rip got injured. Last night, Marco went 6-9 from the field, two of which came from behind the arc. Marco drove to the basket for a clutch layup to give the Bulls the lead in the final seconds against the Nets. He also sealed the game with two clutch free-throws that pushed the Bulls record four games above .500.
Not a lot of people wanted Marco on this team before the regular season, and now people can get enough of the Italian Sensation. He has proven that he can not only shoot, but he can score off the dribble. Marco has repeatedly said that he needs his minutes to get into a rhythm, the question is that remains to be unseen is: can Hamilton and Belinelli co-exist? Marco will have to learn to get into a rhythm with less minutes, or else he'll be back warming up the bench.