Bulls at Bobcats Game Recap: No Rose, No Problem

Bulls at Bobcats Game Recap: No Rose, No Problem
Picture by Keith Allison

The Bulls continued their dominance of the NBA’s bad teams Friday night, blowing out the Charlotte Bobcats 95-64 without Derrick Rose, who sat out to rest his sore back.

The Bulls extended their NBA record by winning their 4th consecutive road game by 20+ points. They are now 5-1 on the year when Rose doesn’t play, and they are 4-0 when CJ Watson starts in his place.

They are 6-2 on their season-long nine game road trip, which finishes up Sunday in Boston with a matinee that will be telecast on ABC (2:00 CT Pre-game, 2:30 game time).

This one was only a game in the sense that two teams were technically competing on the floor- but honestly, the Washington Generals have a better chance of beating the Globetrotters than the Bobcats had of winning this one.

To be fair, Gerald Henderson and DJ Augustin are Charlotte’s two leading scorers, and they both missed this game with injuries. But the Bulls were without the reigning league MVP, so that should even things out.

Not. Even. Close.

CJ Watson hit a 3-pointer on the Bulls’ first possession, and the Bobcats never led in this game. Joakim Noah, who played a team-high 30:36, led the Bulls with 17 points and 14 rebounds. Noah hit seven of his nine field goal attempts and also added three assists for the Bulls, who improved to 6-2 with one game left on their season-long nine game road trip.

Carlos Boozer had 16 points, Luol Deng 12 and John Lucas III added 11 off the bench for the Bulls, who close out the trip with a nationally televised (ABC) matinee in Boston on Sunday.

Reserve forward Derrick Brown hit a layup with 1:32 left in the game for his 10th point, making him the only Bobcat to score in double figures. The Bobcats, who have the league’s worst record at 3-23, lost their 13th consecutive game.

A Look to the Future

To all the Bulls fans who whined and moaned when Jerry Reinsdorf didn’t give MJ a front-office job when he retried… this is why.

The best part of this game- outside of everyone staying healthy, of course- is that it gave Bulls fans a glimpse as to why the Tyrus Thomas to Charlotte trade might turn out to be the 3rd best in Bulls history.

#1, of course, is Polynice for Pippen. Enough said.

#2 is Will Perdue for Dennis Rodman. Again, no explanation needed.

To all the Bulls fans who whined and moaned when Jerry Reinsdorf didn’t give MJ a front-office job when he retried… this is why.

MJ is the guy who drafted Kwame Brown #1 overall several years back, directly ahead of Tyson Chandler and Pau Gasol. This is the guy who gave the Bulls a first-round pick for Tyrus Thomas, and then gave Tyrus a 5-year, $40 million contract. If you didn’t see tonight’s game, you didn’t miss much- Tyrus is the exact same player he was as a Bull, a million dollar talent with a ten cent brain.

It’s hard to imagine this team getting much better in the near future, and as I pointed out in the game preview this pick goes from lottery protected this summer to top-8 protected in 2015. If the Bobcats can’t manage to get out of the bottom 8 of the league in the next 3 seasons after this one, the Bulls own that pick completely unprotected in the 2016 draft.

If you follow high school ball, you might want to start keeping an eye one current freshmen, as they will be entering the draft after one year of college in the summer of 2016. Yes, that’s a long way off, but as bad as the Bobcats are now, and with MJ in charge of trying to help them get better, the Bulls could very possibly be looking at having a top-3 pick in the 2016 draft.

Nikola Mirotic, who continues to tear up the Euroleague as a very young player, will be going into his 3rd NBA season that summer (assuming everything works out as expected). Derrick Rose will just be entering his prime as he will turn 28 in October of 2016. Luol Deng and Joakim Noah will be 31, right in the middle of their primes.

Imagine having a core like that, and then ADDING a top-3(ish) draft pick?

This has the potential to turn the 2016-17 Bulls into the 2003-04 Detroit Pistons- they were coming off a trip to the conference finals and had their entire team back, plus thanks to a similar trade they had the #2 overall pick in the draft.

Of course, instead of taking Dwyane Wade or Chris Bosh or even ‘Melo, they took Darko Milicic. Yeah, that Darko, who was 17 years old at the time and had never played at even a middle-of-the-road league in Europe.

That was the beginning of the end for Joe Dumars- even though the Pistons won the title that year, they started heading downhill after that, Dumars started making bad moves, and you see where they are now.

If you see how bad the Bobcats are now, and how inept MJ has been in the front office, it’s never to early to start dreaming.

Besides, this game was such a blowout non-contest, what else was I supposed to write about?




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  • yea, no need to comment on the game, glad these 3 snoozers are over, at least they can beat a mediocre Boston team to make it more fun (as long as D-Rose plays like he is healthy, Bulls win by 15)....the future does look bright, and the thought of Mirotic and that Charlotte pick gives me more reason to lay off the Dwight Howard talk for a bit (I know, i know, Howard's amazing and Bulls would be unstoppable and all that jazz...)

    I was watching Lakers-Knicks and the whole Jeremy Lin craze last night. Ok, so he does look like he's playing very well and may continue to play at a high level...BUT....don't you love how these Knicks players and fans go INSANE on every little thing...lol...too funny, I understand the fans, but the players after EVERY timeout in the second half were going nuts like they were contending for a championship! It's ok to get excited, but dude take a chill pill on this, your still 12-15! This is another reason why I LOVE this Bulls team so much, they get excited at times, but they aren't freaking out for every little thing...Tibs has got these guys in the right mindset and when everyone is healthy is when the real fun begins.

  • In reply to Keep:

    Boston was looking good as of late, but then they played like hot garbage last night in an ugly loss to Toronto, so who knows what to expect out of them tomorrow?

    I fight myself on Howard all the time- on the one hand, a dominant PG and a dominant C should equal a dominant team. But then you see Howard and how he apparently doesn't take the game very seriously, and you hear his talk about how he wants to win BUT he wants to be "the man", and you don't want to get anywhere near him.

    Knicks fans will always crack me up... Lin-sanity? Really?? They are showing how screwed up their team is, playing just as well if not better without Amare and Melo. Amare might be a perfect fit with Rose- he's not a #1 option, and has no interest in being one (from what I can tell).

  • So I was watching (naturally) and thinking ... how exactly do I comment on this stinking pile of ... So, here ya go:

    "The inmate was sentenced to death in late December. Execution began shortly after 6pm CST; he was pronounced at 8:15pm CDT. However, the inmate expired, by my calculation, at around 6:15-20. Details above."

    Neil Funk said it best at the end of the game - New Orleans played hard, were coached well, and gave an honest effort. This was ... awful. Or words that effect.

    Keep - long time ago, when HGrant was on the Bulls, I had a friend who insisted the Bulls should trade for Karl Malone. I kept saying - yeah, great player, but doesn't fit with what the Bulls do. Same, IMHO, with Howard. Low post guy, clogs the lane, NOT a good FT shooter. And recently, I've been hearing blather that he really doesn't take the game (or his game) very seriously. Thibs-Howard-Rose? No, no, no. Howard - "he's my brother." Yeah - you knock your brother around when you can - just cuz. Other part of that is - they want Noah and Deng - I want them to take Booz. Plus, we'd likely have to take back Turknomore. NO THANK YOU!

    Don - there are so many bad teams this year. Boston twice in 5 days - meh. SAC, MIL, ATL, NJ - before the break. N.O. - and then S.A. and PHI on the road. My god - A healthy team should beat San Antonio and will play much better, this time, against Philly.

    Bulls had 4 in double figures and 4 close. Noah got his groove on, Korver too. Impossible to know if Noah was, in fact, out of shape. Maybe Santa gave him a new pair of hands for Christmas ... dunno.

    JL3 had 11, 3 and 2 in nearly 23 min. And he runs the offense well!! 3 rebounds - and he's not even 6 ft tall.

    They're up by nearly 40, give up an easy basket - and Thibs goes postal. My god - fabulous. MJ left at halftime. He lasted a full 22 1/2 minutes longer than his pathetic team. Injured - yes. Bad - oh my yes!

    You and I have exactly the same thoughts on Thomas - his game is exactly what it was when the Bulls drafted him. How and why MJ gave him his money is ... it simply can't be explained - rationally.

  • In reply to MoneyBoy:

    MoneyBoy, it's hard to believe the difference between the top and the bottom of the East this year. The top 5-6 teams are all pretty good (although MIA and the Bulls are clearly 1-2 in some order), but the bottom 5-6 teams are just disgustingly bad.

    Like I said in my previous post, I go back and forth on Howard, but when this team looks this good without Rose, why make any move? Like you said Howard just clogs the lane, Noah's passing makes him a perfect high-post center... and even Boozer is a good fit with DRose because he likes shooting jumpers as well. I would like to see him and Rose run a little more pick and roll at times, but still- we have the most efficient offense in the NBA right now, who can complain?

    If Noah ever gets complete confidence in his 15-18 foot jumper, watch out- if he makes opposing centers guard him away from the basket, there will be no stopping DRose.

    What MJ did in acquiring and paying Tyrus just reminds me so much of the Eddy Curry trade- a lot of Bulls fans didn't like it at the time, but just wait until we cash in. And they are related, since we got Noah and Tyrus for Eddy, and now we're probably looking at another great pick for Tyrus.

    Eddy Curry- the gift that keeps on giving...

    It's funny, as much as MJ hated Isiah on the court, he is turning into Isiah as an executive.

  • In reply to Don Ellis:

    So - I just took another look at things - Indy lost their 3rd in a row last night - with a full roster. Coming back to earth? They host Denver - not a push over.

    Charlotte had 17 assists on 25 makes. 25 ... in 48 minutes. They never scored 20 pts in ANY of the 4 quarters ... abominable.

    Deng, Booz, and Korver combined for 16-42 ... 38% But it's almost not worth mentioning given how well the defense played and how smoothly the offense ran - with DRose getting treatment all night.

    Thomas, 2 pts, 4 fouls, 7.3 million
    Maggette, 4 pts, 3 TOs, 2 shots, 10.2 million

    Michael, what ARE you thinking?

  • In reply to MoneyBoy:

    I just hope MJ stays in charge until we cash in on that draft pick.

  • glad yall are on the same views with Howard, just not necessary to change it up with what the Bulls have going....

    So can u imagine if the Bulls got to play the Knicks in the next couple of days? We all know how D-Rose loves to raise his game for upcoming guards like Lin...D-Rose would go off on this guy and it would be so much fun to watch!

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    Don Ellis started covering sports professionally when he was 15. The same year (1980), as a student assistant at Seeger Memorial High School in West Lebanon, IN, he was one of the first in the world to use, study and implement analytics in basketball. He attended Daytona State College and Ball State University, and some of his past credits include InsideHoops (NBA Runaround: The NBA According to Ellis) and ESPN Florida (The Florida Sports Reporters), where he was fortunate enough to work with many rising stars, including NFL Network's Dan Hellie, Redskins coach Jay Gruden, Magic radio and TV personality Dante Marchitelli, and WSB-TV (Atlanta) Sports Director Zach Klein. In addition to running the Bullsville blog and officiating basketball, baseball and football for the KHSAA, he is also a bass player and vocalist who writes and produces music in his spare time (you may remember his internet hit "I Hate Eddy Curry"). He's a 3rd-generation Cubs fan, a Bulls fan since the days of Van Lier and Sloan, and a life-long New England Patriots fan. He's seen Primus 9 times and thinks Les Claypool walks on water. By far his greatest accomplishment is being a father of three and grandfather of one.

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