Not much you can say about that Celtics game, the Bulls absolutely pounded a bad and injured team. When they face poor defensive teams the offense moves the ball, gets to the rim, and makes shots. But it's not enough if they want to contend, they have to be able to score when someone challenges them. So I'm just going to enjoy the piling up of home wins and not get too excited over outstanding play until their next real test. But remember, good teams don't win close games: good teams win blowouts. So blowing out a bad team is not a meaningless sign.
Some other quick thoughts: I will say that although the scenario is rare, Luol and Nocioni will pound any frontcourt that's actually smaller than them. And Duhon actually played a good game. And it's good to see Sweetney get some burn: averaging 17 minutes his last 3 games. And...the whole 'cheering for the Bulls to score 100 in order to get free big macs' is pretty lame but it also means a win, so eh.
Also, have to love Skiles' postgame comments where he focused on the upsettingly poor defense in garbage-time. Hopefully he gives the bench guys some slack, knowing that the refs give up too in those situations, making it that much harder on the defense and allowing busts like Tony 'screamin while down 28' Allen to pad his stat line. Although I would be concerned about Adrian Griffin, who looked terrible. In a way, I'm hoping he's still hurt, that's how bad he looked.
On to some links:
- If you're feeling really nostalgic for former Bulls, ESPN's Chris Sheridan tracked down (sub. reqd) a few out-of-work former NBA-ers including Toni Kukoc, Antonio Davis, Eddie Basden, Eddie Robinson, Jay Williams, Jermaine Jackson, and Lonny Baxter.
- Via TrueHoop, here's some (free) John Hollinger analysis on the Bulls:
The team that's better than you think: Chicago. Believe it or not, the sub-.500 Bulls have been the class of the East thus far. Granted, this is a complement along the lines of "the best sushi in Wyoming" or "the best beach town in Siberia," but in spite of a losing record the Bulls have done well against their conference mates -- going 6-3 vs. the East -- and remember, only five of their first 16 games were at home.
Moreover, the Bulls have more potential for improvement than any team from here on out. That's true both internally -- rookies Tyrus Thomas and Thabo Sefolosha figure to improve substantially as the year goes on. And externally, no team has more trade assets than Chicago, which could allow it to net a Big Kahuna like Kevin Garnett or Ray Allen at the trade deadline. Even though the Bulls are off to a rough start, the rest of the conference has been so disappointing that this still looks like the team to beat.
- Here's another example of how the Bulls' tough early schedule makes their standing in the East seem worse than it really is.
- A couple of the Free Darko guys got some press credentials and were in the Bulls locker room for Saturday's Wizards game.