Richard Hamilton and C.J. Watson are day-to-day with their respective injuries. John Lucas III is expected to play in Watson's rotation spot Tuesday when the Bulls host the Hawks, due to the sprained elbow C.J. sustained against the Grizzlies on Sunday.
Hamilton was marked inactive -- as news to everyone at gametime on Sunday. He told the press he tweaked his groin on Friday in L.A. against the Clippers and that it was a "little better" on Monday. Ronnie Brewer will likely start for Rip if he can't go Tuesday.
[Hawks vs Bulls coverage]
- It's impossible to watch the the Bulls this season without noticing how well they are running the floor. Against the Grizzlies, they scored 33 fastbreak points in the home opener just three nights after scoring 33 in Sacramento. The second time this season of at least 30 fastbreak points only five games into the 2011-12 season comes only one game away from the three times they were able to do so across the 2010-11 62-win 82-game season.
"The better our defense and rebounding is, we can get into the open floor," Tom Thibodeau said Monday. "We have to have the discipline to run for 48 minutes. You can't stop after one half. It's important to run late also."
The Bulls are third in this very young NBA season, averaging 21.0 fastbreak PPG, behind the Nuggets (24.0) and Heat (22.8), according to TeamRankings.com. Last season, their 13.4 per game was 19th in the league. They currently lead the league in fastbreak efficiency at 2.838. The pace is up to 95 possessions per game from last season's 92.8 per game, while the NBA average has only gone up to 94.7 from 94.5, according to Hoopdata.
- When Rip Hamilton was signed by the Bulls, I was optimistic to the point where I was feeling gullible that he needed a winning atmosphere to not be a jackass; and that this season with the Bulls would rejuvenate him. I seldom make such claims, but his winning pedigree just sparked the feeling and this blind squirrel may have found a nut.
He recently said: "I love it because this is what it’s supposed to be. When I was in Detroit, my first seven or eight years, we won every night. It was all about winning. To get the opportunity to get back in that groove, that’s home for me."
- As for eating crow, I was of the very wrong to expect a serious lockout hangover. Ratings and attendance are up across the league.