I know it's only 3 games and some world beaters become egg beaters once the regular season begins. Others show enough skills to earn a seat on an NBA bench after being ignored in the draft. Raw rookies get a taste of competition and young veterans can sharpen their games. So these are more than just glorified scrimmages with a bunch of guys unlikely to even make the "D" league, I would like to get feedback from other Blogabullers on their observations so far.
HERE ARE MINE After game one, I wrote Lay off TT all you naysayers
After seeing 3 games, and openly admitting to some personal biases when evaluating Tyrus through my Rose colored glasses, I feel most of the negativity directed at his performances seem overly critical by those doubting Thomases on this blog. What I observed was a rejuvinated player with a huge potential upside who is working hard to improve his deficiencies but still has a lot to learn:
I am predicting you Thomas haters will eventually be eating crow. This will be a breakout year for "the human highlight film", primarily on the defensive end once he (and Kirk) cut down on those silly fouls, while his improving offense will be a pleasant surprise and icing on a cake that the “soul eater” will be feasting on under our new and vastly improved coaching staff.
The Bulls are headed for the playoffs now that the “corpse” and his fellow zombies have returned to their crypts. Bloodsucking Boyl*n can no longer drain the life out of the baby bulls and TT will soar like an eagle now that his shackles have been removed and his new coaches continue to teach him how to harness and exploit his freakish athleticism, motivating him to someday reach his huge upside potential with more positive feedback in a week than he received his first 2 years here.
As I watched him race across the court in Orlando, I remember Skiles and B*#l%n lamenting the fact that he never ran the floor, not even once while anxioulsy waiting for him to make a mistake that would once again relegate him to the end of the pines to teach him a lesson that they are in charge and he has made them angry for not following their non-functional game plan.
Rose, TT, Thabo and Noah may never win any shooting contests, but if the NBA had relay races, they would be Gold Medal favorites. This is going to be an exciting year from a fans standpoint regardless of their record. Basketball is going to be an entertaing spectator sport once again next season with the Bulls new uptempo offensive sets.
TT has so far averaged 18 pts per game in 27 minutes, along with 7.7 boards, 1 steal, 2 blocks and 3 turnovers. His FG % was .436 with his midrange jumper showing much more accuracy than last year. More impressive was his attacking the rim that led to 24 FTA in which he made 20 (.833). He penetrated and drew fouls consistently even though the lanes were jammed due to a lack of spacing. If he can improve his footwork and set himself better, he could be a monster this season with his quickness if defenders have to guard his jumpshot more closely while he flys by them for a jam. The Bulls need more slashers who can get opponents in penalty situations earlier. Once Derrick Rose gets comfortable working with him, I believe this will lead to some spectacular ally oops and easy baskets in transition since their lightening quickness will lead to many more trips to the line fpr both of them.
Rose initially played soft and tentatively at first until Vinnie told him to pick up the pace and he started penetrating instead of dishing off at the top of the key. His jump shot has been non-existent and his point guard skills are very unrefined, but his atleticism is on full display. As I said earlier, Rose has much to learn and will not immediately be the second coming of Chris Paul or even Chris Duhon until he is ready to take off the training wheels with more experience, thus the need to somehow keep both Hinrich and Gordon until Rose is thoroughly potty trained. Rose shot only .294, hittting mostly layups and missed 5 of 14 FT's. In 28:45 minutes he averaged 9.5 pts., 4.5 assists and 4 turnovers.
Noah does not appear to be in game shape, although he came out of his fog in the 3rd game and should be fine by the beginning of the season. Hopefully by then, he will have developed some type of rudimentary shot to keep the defense honest and make at least 50% of his FT's. His energy and rebounding will only get better. Gray has lost some baby fat and is moving much better (still extremely slow) but is a force once he establishes position in the paint. He should be helpful offensively against certain teams that do not rely on quickness. (8.3 pts per game in 12.35 minutes).
Nichols averaged 13.3 ppg (.419) in 28:35 minutes, while showing 3 pt. range. He may be a keeper since his long range shooting can help space the floor, especially if we trade Noce. Finally , Langford averaged 13.7 PPG in 28;20 minutes, shooting an amazing .682 from the floor and 50% on 3's. PeeOn Curry also exhibited some ball handling skills in approximately 20 minutes per game, shooting only .381 but he did tie Rose in assists with 11. Both should at least make the "D" league. Simmons demonstrated shot blocking skills but zero offense. None of the others wil be on any Bulls or D league roster once the season starts,,,, in my opinion.