Gordon has been the subject of numerous trades both here at ol' blogabull and elsewhere because of his suspect defense. However, if what is being said below is true, we just might be having our own mini-Carmelo miracle makeover too! Can't wait for the season to start, I'm already getting goose bumps.
''With the makeup of this team and the way I played last year toward the end of the season, I think I play better as a starter,'' said Gordon, who started 47 of his 80 games last season, during which he averaged 16.9 points. ''We'll see what happens. I've been in both positions before.''
Skiles said, he also expects Gordon to start.
''There's no reason to doubt that," Skiles said. ''The [challenge] is keeping him on the court. In the past, he's committed a couple fouls when he's been tired and you have to take him out. Or he's kind of lost focus and given up a backdoor cut.
''He's spent a lot of time on getting himself right in regards to that. And, all of a sudden, he's one of our best defenders in camp right now. He's doing great.
"Right now, he's tied for the lead in our camp in defensive rebounds, which is astonishing for his size," coach Scott Skiles said. "I told Ben before (Friday's) practice we can't really find one thing on tape or one possession on tape where he's not into it with his activity defensively.
"He's improved a little bit each year, but this year in particular, he's put in a lot of time on his overall game. He wants to be an all-around player. I would never put a ceiling on him."
There's more in the article about Ben working to be a go-to-guy for the Bulls when they need points.
COMMENT: It's crazy to think how much difference a year can make. Last year at this time we had so much uncertainty with the Curry trade, Tyson being out of shape, losing Antonio Davis, etc. I don't want to jinx it but everything seems so much better this year:
-Everybody is coming into camp in great shape (except Sweetney);
-The core has improved significantly: Hinrich (confidence); Gordon (defense); Deng (shooting & bulk); Nocioni (consistency & increased production);
-We've finally added veterans who can significantly contribute on the court, as opposed to only off the court;
-All the personalities seem to be gelling;
-Skiles has been mouthing nothing but praise and optimism (can't believe I'm typing that);
-Thabo is playing so well, he may become a regular part of the rotation early on;
-Tyrus is picking things up so quickly, we may be able to rely on him early in the season (unlike with Curry and Chandler who still don't get it).
So my question is, what is your take on this new Gordon? Specifically, do you really believe his defense has drastically improved and can he sustain it throughout the entire season?
Bears are playing great...Bulls could be great...Life is good in Chicago.