The Bulls ‘brain’ ‘trust’ maintained leading into this season that their half-cocked rebuild would at least show the ‘culture’ of ‘competitiveness’. As my sarcastic quotation marks denote: this hasn’t really been the case. They are getting blown out quite often, including tonight’s 113-91 drubbing at the hands of LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers.
So....truth be told: I had a recording malfunction with the DVR and missed much of tonight’s game. Definitely missed the competitive portion, which from what I could tell was 10 minutes or so. Then the Cavaliers went on a 15-2 run and pretty much didn't’ look back. It was the LeBron James show, pretty much.
Meanwhile ::scans boxscore during total garbage time in 4th:: ...um...not a single Bull shot well, outside of Robin Lopez going 5-7 for 14 points. In terms of players that mattered (does anything?), both Lauri Markkanen and Kris Dunn struggled.
Could you at least say the fellas played hard? eh, not really:
Hate to see this. Dunn turns the ball over, then doesn't get back on defense and concedes the layup. He starts out the play next to Love. By the time Love gets the ball, Dunn is out of the frame. pic.twitter.com/L4vyGsF3mf— Stephen Noh (@StephNoh) December 5, 2017
This happened near the end of the 3rd (and I was half-watching), after which the Cavaliers were either missing or passing up wide open shots. Dwyane Wade comically gunned for an end-of-quarter shot that led to a 24 second violation, and then Justin Holiday banked-in a heave to actually get the deficit back to 15 instead of a more appropriate 40. It also gave the Bulls a ‘win’ in the quarter, a real feather in their cap.
Then LeBron came back in and put the game officially out of reach.
LeBron taking on four guys and scoring easily pic.twitter.com/v7EW9vb1px— Stephen Noh (@StephNoh) December 5, 2017
James finished with 23 points, alongside Dwyane Wade’s (ugh) 24. Kevin Love had his first good game against the Bulls ever with 24 points himself on 8-13 shooting to go with 13 rebounds. The Bulls are truly dead when even their weird hex over Kevin Love is over.
The Bulls are a Kemba Walker layup away from losing their 15th straight game, and statistically are approaching historically bad. John Paxson and Fred Hoiberg (Gar was there too but I think buying tickets to Spain on his phone) insisted before the season that they weren’t playing to lose. I don’t think they were lying, either, they just underestimated how bad they are at their jobs.
Congrats, guys: high-five!