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Bulls 95, Bobcats 64: Bulls keep road blowout streak going without Rose

That's four straight 20+ point road wins for the Bulls, which I've read (and heard on NBATV) is a record. So that's neat. Watching the actual games isn't that exciting though it's easy to stay impressed with how locked-in the Bulls are. When discussing an emerging team like the Sixers or Pacers, the first indicator is winning at home, and then blowing out bad teams there. There is no disputing the Bulls are a great team, a different level, and they can blow out teams on the road, even missing their best player. When at this status, is it important that the Bulls never have an off night? Maybe not, the playoffs you assume all teams are going to be ready to play. But it's a mindset worth commending all the same.


The Bobcats meanwhile are terrible, and injuries hurt them even more than the Bulls because they replace average players with awful ones, whereas the Bulls have to endure some John Lucas time but not much else. Charlotte is both small and slight, yet to compound that they also can't shoot. Oh don't worry, they also can't take care of the ball. The Bulls started hot with a 30-point first quarter (a hallmark of their recent streak) behind 3-point shooting, and never had to worry much after that. Noah and Boozer were able to destroy the Bobcats inside (Biyombo actually looks like a talent, but needs way more strength), with Boozer actually unleashing a couple of baseline spin moves.

It was fun all-around if you were on the Bulls sidelines. I include Thibodeau screaming at his team when they're up 25, because I think that's fun for him. But you had the aforementioned Boozer post moves, Noah with a couple of tornadoes, the Bulls actually try an alley-oop (Lucas to failed), Neil Funk getting in some digs at old foe Tyrus Thomas (who literally looks awful...why is he so thin?*), and a possession where Taj Gibson lost his shoe. That last bit inspired some must-watch video from Joakim Noah.

*[I was trying to remember all game, besides that infamous severely-protected draft pick the Bulls received for Tyrus, who did they get as rentals in that trade to match salaries? I did recall the Acie Law experience, but the player I was trying to conjure up was Flip Murray. Man, remember him?]

The Bulls, either as an organization or from a rare bout of sanity by coach Thibodeau, sat Rose on Friday. So, as much as actions to the contrary garner consternation in this space, I have to say great job by them. I'm trying to remember that in this insanely-good season where minutes for stars is a concern, one way to limit confusion is to just not really take Thibs at his word. Sam Smith provided a reminder:

Rose, though, is expected to play against Boston Sunday in the national TV game.

Russian defense minister, errr, Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said it’s "still the same" with Rose.

"Day to day," said Thibodeau. "More precautionary. Just wanted to give him another day of rest. We’ll see where he is tomorrow. We’ll take it day by day."

Thibodeau plays this little game with reporters, who two or there times a day at practice and games ask him about Rose. Thibodeau always says day to day or game time decision, though C.J. Watson, who started for Rose, revealed after the game that Thibodeau had told the team Thursday that Rose wasn’t playing Friday. Thibodeau has this NFL mentality belief that you cannot give out information to your opponent.

The Boston game is notable, but may not be much more of a challenge. I suppose they could be fired-up after losing in Toronto Friday night, they don't really look to be in the same class as the Bulls. They're better than the teams the Bulls have absolutely destroyed in this road winning streak of theirs, so maybe something like a 10-point win is in the offering? The Bulls do have a pedestrian record against winning teams, so for a team always looking for challenges they can use that as motivation Sunday.