What a start to the Bulls season!
Rose has more points on more shots. On the positive side, his FTA have gone from 3.1 to 4.3 to 5.6. Not only does this mean more shots made at his 80% clip, but it wears down a defense and puts them into the penalty faster. On the negative side, his shooting percentage has gone from 49% to 45%. The main culprit? He has quadrupled his 3PA, but is still only shooting 24% from behind the arc. If you remove all of his 3PA, he would be shooting 50%. Overall, I believe this means Rose has been a less efficient scorer this year, and will remain so until he stops shooting threes, or starts hitting them at a higher clip.
Rose's assist totals have exploded. His first two years he had 6 assists a game. About what you would expect for a point guard with the ball in his hands as much as he does, and with his ability to wreak havoc by penetrating in the lane. This year it has jumped to 9.5. While some of that is having teammates who are shooting the ball well, no one would mistake the Bulls for a squad of eagle eyed assassins. Some of it is probably a superior offensive system that creates more opportunities. Some of it is the Bulls higher pace. But I think a lot of it is Rose growing into a true point guards, as opposed to only a slasher who only kicks the ball out when he gets in trouble. Rose's turnover total has jumped as well, but his assist/to ratio remains right in line as previous seasons.
Rose has shown some modest improvement in his defense. His steals and blocks are up slightly. But so are his fouls. Although no one will get any heart burn over 2 fouls per game.
Offensively, this combination of scoring and passing puts him about equal with Deron Williams. Defensively, I would say about almost as good as defender as Williams as well. Not as strong, but gets the occasional block with his explosiveness.
Cut out the threes, and the great scorer is now also a great passer and not a horrid defender.
Luol is flourishing in Coach Thibs offense. He is having a career offensive year. Career highs in points, 3PA, 3PM, FTA, FTM, FGA, FGM per game, as well as in 3P% (44% on 4.3 3PA/game!). In addition, he is 1st or 2nd on the team in all of the above catagories. He is hitting threes. He is getting to the line. He is doing everything that even the most optimistic fan wanted of him.
Deng's per minute rebounding has dropped to the lowest level of his career. Hanging out at the 3 pt line explains some of this on the offensive end. On the defensive end, the team has fone fromshooting 45% to 48%. Maybe there are just fewer rebounds to be had? Is he leaking out on the break early? Perhaps the rest of the team is doing such a good job that there arent rebounds for Luol to find. The Bulls are third behind Orlando and the Lakers in rebound differential. Last year they were ninth, so they arent hurting in this area.
Luol's numbers remain in line with past years. He is commiting an additional foul per game, which needs to stop.
Deng's game is not exactly like anyone else's, but with his increased three production, ability to get to the line, and mediocre rebounding, I'd say he is now statistically similar to Paul Pierce.
Having the best year of his career. Cut down the fouls though.
Took a step up last year, and is taking another one now. From 6 to 10 to 16 pts/game on over 50% shooting. FTA have gone from 2.3 to 3.4 to 6.5(!), which is key since he is a solid 77% FT shooter (another area he keeps improving in).
Took a step up last year, and is taking another one now. 7.5 to 11 to 13.3. That last jump seems mainly due to increased minutes, but that is another strength. Noah is playing 39 min/game! In part due to...
Noah is committing one less foul a game, despite all the extra minutes. Which is allowing him to play extra minutes. Oh, and he took a step up last year, and is taking another one now. 1.6 blocks to 1.8 to 2 per game.
Better than Duncan or Bogut or Horford, but not a Howard.
Having a career year. Stay healthy, and keep improving Joakim. Sky's the limit!
CARLOS BOOZER TAJ GIBSON
Not much was expected of Taj, but no one told him that. 9 pts to 16 per game. 50% shooting to 60%.
7.5 to 6.4. Seriously, where have all the rebounds gone? Is it all Noah?
A very nice 1 steal and 1.9 blocks per game. Still fouls too much at 3.8 a game.
Outplaying Chris Bosh. Tyrus with a jump shot?
Taj is no Carlos Boozer, but he has been a welcome surprise. Just keep that mojo working once you start coming off the bench!
Incomplete. Havent seen much from our new additions. Carlos is out. Brewer is still in preseason form. Kyle has been about what he was in Utah, which is a nice role player off the bench.
I thought this team had a shot at the #2 seed. I still do. Noah, Deng, Rose, and Taj are all taking a step up, and without Boozer's injury we could have the best record in the East. The circus trip will be hard, but I love the outlook of this team.