[Thanks to torch for today's game preview. I was briefly invigorated after the trade deadline, but now I look to games with a bit of dread thinking of what VDN is going to do. He's benching Derrick Rose! -ed.]
With the tragedies of yesterday, it will be hard as a fan to focus on a simple game that's getting played tonight in our nation's capitol. But I think we can say with some certainty that both Johnny and Norm would want nothing more than the boys to play basketball tonight.
To the game - it's hard to predict how this game will turn out. We should beat a team like Washington, but expectations have been turned on their heads with wins against Denver and Orlando followed by losses to Indiana and New Jersey over the past week. The Wizards are currently fighting Oklahoma City for the second most ping pong balls in the lottery this summer.
Position by position we match up well - Rose/Deng/Noah easily out-class James/McGuire/Songaila. I'll give them PF with Jamison (their only consistent weapon) over Thomas. I'll leave it up to the reader to debate Bulter versus Gordon. When it comes to bench depth, we easily win the battle. The Washington bench has combined for only 60 points over their last three games. A lot of that has to do with injury (Arenas and Haywood out, Butler and Songaila missing time), but it is that injured team we are playing tonight.
We always seem to have rough battles with Washington, so this one will likely come down to who wants it more. Let's hope that the post-game discussion is talking about how we bounced back from those disappointing losses this week, rather than debating whether Vinny has gone crazy with his new toys. Accuscore has us as a 2:1 favorite. We may even get some support from the President on this one.
Game time: 6:05 PM Central
Coverage: Comcast SportsNet, ESPN Radio 1000
Hopefully tonight will be the third time in a row that I've watched the Bulls win in the Verizon Center.
I'll be the guy in the 1984 red Jordan jersey just a few rows behind the Bulls bench. Enjoy the game!