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Adventures in small sample size

Can't Sam just be happy with Thabo taking Chris Duhon's place in the rotation?

Of course not, Thabo's play is a step towards pushing Ben Gordon out the door.

Thabo's having a good stretch, and after his dismal first half of the season is at least confirming what should've been happening all season: him as the 3rd guard instead of Duhon. But between this meager success and Gordon's benching and then injury, in Sam's mind this is the logical extension.

Gordon is one year older than Thabo, yet Thabo, who has been until now a dismal offensive player, gets this extended development track while Gordon gets rewarded as the one of the team's best players by being constantly jerked in and out of the lineup and continually called out as the team's weakness. Yes, he's having a poor season, but he normally finishes stronger than he starts and once he does get back from a wrist injury (paging Dr. BaB Commenter for a consult) I expect at least a return to his career norms.

And luckily Boylan has no real authority, so coach Wallace won't allow the stance of injured players not be given their jobs back. Fair enough in principle, Boylan, but lets just say better players? This road trip has given the chance for some guys to perform well, but they're a better team with Hinrich, Gordon, and Deng. Sure it's fun in stretches to watch the lesser talented scrap towards competition each game, but not as the franchise direction.

When they get back it's not a matter of limiting Thabo and Tyrus Thomas, it's about keeping Duhon and Nocioni off the court. That's the benefit of depth, not to supplant the best players. Fixing Paxson's phone to get him to clean out the frontcourt glut would help too.

I'd even swallow my bile and accept Gordon coming off the bench if Thabo starts. But having Gordon deemed expendable? What exactly do the Bulls plan to do without him? Chris Duhon as the 3rd guard again? I can't hold that sickening reaction down.