Nobody signed up for a game preview today, and there's spots available FYI. So I'll just give a brief one.
On the injury front, Hinrich is still down in the well. Jimmy Butler got blitzed last night at Wahlbergers (alleged...by me) and missed shootaround, but he's expected to play!
"I gotta win that $25 bet with my trainer" https://t.co/DYyYoDucYM— Jason Patt (@Bulls_Jay) January 22, 2016
This is game 2 in a 3-in-4-nights stretch, and the Bulls practiced yesterday. That's downright Thibsian, right?
Anyway, they caught a break on Celtics end with their starting PF Amir Johnson missing tonight unexpectedly. Kelly Olynyk will start, making for an aesthetically-goofy matchup with Pau Gasol.
These teams have split the season series so far, in somewhat close games until the winner pulled away late in each. The Celtics are a game over .500, 3 games behind the Bulls in the East standings, but that's been a worse record than their production would indicate. Boston so far has posted a better offensive and defensive rating than Chicago, and somehow are 3rd in the league in defense with what you'd think would be poor interior personnel. Maybe Amir Johnson is way better at it than advertised, and his absence will be huge tonight?
It could also be that the Bulls have had Jimmy Butler to close out games, whereas the Celtics are relying on the much more volatile Isaiah Thomas (or Evan Turner in Evan Turner's mind). Thomas has shot a combined 10-32 in his two games against the Bulls this season.
Early start time at 6:30, locally on WPWR POWER 50. Do they still call it that? I swear the cable guide had it starting at 6, so be warned if you tune in then it may just mean 40 minutes of Funk. Neil Funk, not the fun kind. Speaking of not-fun, head to CelticsBlog for a more proper preview from behind enemy lines.