Even quicker recap this time, as I'm getting pretty tired of these Rose-less (and to a lesser extent, Tyrus-less) preseason games.
Bulls shot 65% in the first quarter and was effective clogging the lane on defense. Jumping out to an early lead, it was never lost even when the Bulls had a lineup of Hunter/Pargo/Byars/Johnson/Richard and the Wolves had several starters back on the court. Richard did have his best preseason game, but it's far too late to secure his spot on the team. Byars looked alright, but that may just be a numbers game keeping him off the roster.
Lazy bullets time:
- Hinrich was 2-3 from three, continuing a great trend this preseason.
- Deng shot his jumper better (even a three-pointer in there), but still had a couple plays were he didn't look right, being blocked from behind on a dunk attempt by Kevin Love was one of them. Deng also dislocated his pinky in the game, though it is reportedly not serious.
- Noah is awesome, and getting more assertive on offense by the game. Though I can see how he's easy to hate, what with his outright screaming when teammates scored. The especially empty Target Center made the annoying habit even more audible. But hey, if he's this good, who cares? The Celtics are all woofing idiots.
- Someone for James Johnson to emulate: Ryan Gomes? He's sort of that 'power three' game Johnson can have, and in one of the first plays of the game Gomes sprinted baseline to get post position and hit a turnaround over Deng.
- Stacy King finally took the 'group effort scoring!' mantra too far, when mentioning Lindsey Hunter as one of those options as a 3-point shooter.
- Al Jefferson looked awful until Chris Richard was guarding him. I don't think it's crazy to evaluate Jefferson against Joakim, and be willing to sacrifice Jefferson's low-post game if one can do everything else, like Noah can.