A win's a win, they had to win this stretch of easy schedule (oops, they went 4-4), and that's good.
But man this Bulls team is hard to watch. It took a miracle Ben Gordon 4-point play to send it to overtime, and several minutes of dodging bullets while the Clippers failed to capitalize on their inside advantage, either by some, um, gritty defense (more on that later) or by their own ineptitude. A couple OT shots by Luol Deng.
I suppose whatever breaks the Bulls got Wednesday night balances out the ones they didn't get in Charlotte the night before. But hell, this is the Clippers and the Bobcats, they shouldn't need breaks.
It's now been several games since Derrick Rose has been great. Not officially a worry, but if anything it shows how much this team needs him to be at a very high level.
And Vinny's of lack of recognition of the importance of defending the basket and defensive rebounding continued. Gray continues to start, Gooden continues to be spacy, and Marcus Camby set his career high (it's been a long one, remember) in rebounds. Tyrus Thomas suffered a concussion (didn't see how, they displayed a message on the scoreboard in the 2nd half) which explains some of it, and Nocioni and Gooden shot the ball well enough on offense to make up for their usual defensive ineptitude, but it never gets less confusing that Vinny thinks that a Gooden-Gray or Gooden-Noc or Noc-Gray (didn't see that one, at least) is a sustainable strategy, instead of merely an emergency one.
(forgot to mention this when I first posted: After Gordon hit that 4-point play, Vinny did make an actual defense-for-offense sub to end regulation. That's improvement.)
All that said, while Zach Randolph had his way for most of the game, Nocioni was relentless in denying him the ball, and even bilked a couple offensive fouls/violations for his trouble. He made Randolph work, and Randolph isn't a big fan of that.
Good that it ultimately got them a victory, they needed it. But these past two games can hardly be separated, despite the different result. It's just really hard to watch this team right now.