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Game Thread #21: Bulls vs. Indiana Pacers

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Theory time: the Bulls do poorly against good defensive teams. Against poor defenses they can do their drive-and-kick stuff all night, and we know they have good shooters. Or maybe they just do good against bad teams in general? Either way, Minnesota is (surprisingly) the 5th best defensive team in the league. So compared to the likes of Boston(24th), Philly(27th), and the Knicks(26th), we all should've expected a test on Saturday. Amazing to think how different we'd evaluate this Bulls roster if they were in the Western conference.

So time to re-focus. Not on Allen Iverson, or Marty Vicious, but the Indiana Pacers.'s a hard team to focus on. The Bulls beat them earlier in the year, a game that was probably Ben Wallace's best of the season, with 18 rebounds leading the Bulls to a 51-28 total rebound advantage.

For tonight's game, Stephen Jackson is suspended for some usual Stephen Jackson bullshit. Jermaine O'Neal is likely out with a sore hamstring, and Al Harrington, Jamaal Tinsley, and Marquis Daniels may also be out due to food poisoning. Awesome quote: "Daniels attempted to join the team[for shootaround, the basketball kind -Matt], but was vomiting on the bus and was returned to the hotel."

 Oh and back to the theory: The Pacers are 10th in defensive efficiency. So that'd be as unsettling as Daniels' stomach, but I'd think they won't be as strong on D while not at full strength.

Lastly: Go Rex!