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Game Thread # 17: Bulls vs. Boston Celtics

Nothing like the Eddy Curry-like soft underbelly of the schedule to get the Bulls closer to .500, with two wins over the weekend extending their win streak to 4.

The 5-10 Celtics may actually be worse than their record, as they had a pretty favorable early schedule, and already have 6 losses at home. And the Bulls are getting them at the right time, as the injuries have piled up: All three centers (Ratliff, Olowokandi, and Perkins) will likely be out, forcing the Celtics to go small. If that's the case, maybe we can expect more Mike Sweetney, who Skiles is starting to play more, especially against small frontcourts. And it also allows Nocioni and Deng to stay on the court more together, although I doubt I'm the only one thinking either may cool off tonight after a red-hot weekend for them both. The Bulls shot very well as a team the past two games, 48% and 50%, and are now the best 3-point shooting team in the league (interestingly enough, the Celtics are 2nd).

Tonight could be yet another game to break 100, since the Celtics are currently 21st in Defensive Efficiency, and have been maligned these past couple years as simply a bad defensive team.  This game looks to be as winnable as they come: when the Bulls face a bad defense and are their suspect-offense isn't tested, things just seem much easier for them. The complete decimation of frontcourt depth will play right into the Bulls hands, though I'll be interested in seeing young Celtics like Gerald Green and Ryan Gomes get more minutes. And I'm also interested in seeing Paul Pierce, although with him nursing an elbow injury it may not be the best night to see how he'd fit in as the go-to scorer on the Bulls.

Blogging with the Enemy: Man, too many to mention, but a special recommendation to CelticsBlog and CelticsStuffLive.

This is an open game thread, so use this space to laugh at the thought of a sad Bill Simmons...