All Bull - Chicago Bulls

All Bull - Chicago Bulls

Halloween bash in Boston

Posted by mikemcgraw on Sat, 11/01/2008 - 12:25
Before dissecting the Bulls' brutal loss in Boston on Friday, I should mention e-mailer Larry pointing out that "Disco Gino" is not an every-game occurrence at the Garden. The Celtics gave Gino the role of victory cigar last season, which means they only play the "American Bandstand" video when a game is well in hand, the same way legendary coach Red Auerbach would light his cigar when he smelled victory. One of the Boston papers wrote that Gino never danced during the opener against Cleveland, because the game was close well into the fourth quarter. To me, that's no way to run a basketball franchise because no one wins if Gino doesn't dance. But it wasn't a problem with the Bulls in town. The Bandstand timeout occurred with 2:35 remaining and the Celtics ahead 95-71.

Rose, Mayo will supply the NBA's first rookie showdown

Posted by mikemcgraw on Thu, 10/30/2008 - 19:35
The trip to play the defending champs and the Kevin Garnett scream machine on Friday is bound to draw more attention. But Bulls fans shouldn't overlook the home date with Memphis the following night at the UC. Barring a late injury, it will be the league's first meeting of top-flight rookies with Derrick Rose and O.J. Mayo on the floor. This has the potential to be a memorable season for NBA rookies. Last year was not rookie-friendly. Seattle's Kevin Durant made a big impact with a bad team, averaging 20.3 ppg. The second-leading rookie scorer was Clippers forward Al Thornton at 12.7 ppg, while four others barely slid into double digits – Memphis' Juan Carlos Navarro, who fled the NBA over the summer; Seattle's Jeff Green, Houston's Luis Scola and Atlanta's Al Horford.

Bulls are definitely not rebuilding

Posted by mikemcgraw on Tue, 10/28/2008 - 10:18
One of the more ridiculous topics I've heard this month is whether this is a rebuilding season for the Bulls. When Minnesota got rid of Kevin Garnett, that could be considered rebuilding. But mostly that's an exercise for college football. Rich Rodriguez is rebuilding. The Bulls, with just two new players, are not. The Bulls were certainly at a crossroads when last season ended, finishing 33-49 after most observers expected them to challenge for the Eastern Conference title. But winning the draft lottery and having Derrick Rose fall into their laps changed everything.

Bulls-Bucks heating up? You be the judge

Posted by mikemcgraw on Sun, 10/26/2008 - 10:40
In the empty space between meaningless and meaningful games involving the Bulls and Milwaukee Bucks, I thought I'd share a conversation I had with Bucks forward Richard Jefferson following Friday's preseason finale at the United Center. To set the stage, Bulls rising star Derrick Rose was shaken up in the first quarter when fouled by Jefferson. Rose was driving to the basket, fell awkwardly after the foul, then left the game with a hip flexor strain that turned out to be minor. Jefferson committed a solid foul, designed to prevent Rose from making the layup, but there was nothing dirty or unnecessary about it.

Rose injury not serious; tempers flare in preseason finale

Posted by mikemcgraw on Fri, 10/24/2008 - 19:01
Rookie Derrick Rose was knocked out of Friday's preseason finale against Milwaukee with a right hip flexor strain, but insisted the injury was nothing serious. "This is no big deal at all," Rose said after the Bulls' 112-104 overtime win. "I could have played. I'm fine." Midway through the first quarter, Rose drove to the basket on the fast break and was fouled by Milwaukee's Richard Jefferson. Rose fell awkwardly to the floor and stayed down for a few seconds. But he hit both free throws, then knocked down a 17-foot jumper on the Bulls' next possession before leaving the game. The South Side point guard has been the Bulls' best player in preseason by a wide margin.

Hughes believes his injury will heal fast

Posted by mikemcgraw on Thu, 10/23/2008 - 16:50
When practice ended Thursday at the Berto Center, Larry Hughes was on the sideline with his right arm in a sling. But he said an MRI exam showed no structural damage and the shoulder doesn't feel all that bad. So he's optimistic that he may be sidelined for around 2 weeks, far less than the 6-8 weeks that was reported in some places. Of course, we don't know if Hughes' prognosis is realistic or not. He is planning to have test done Friday where dye is injected into the shoulder and another MRI is taken. “It's really weird that its not bothering me as much as it should,” Hughes said. “Right now, it's just kind of sore. It just feels like I need a couple days rest.”

Welcome to the Rose show

Posted by mikemcgraw on Wed, 10/22/2008 - 17:52
NBA.com just posted its annual general manager survey, where the 30 NBA GMs are asked to predict a variety of topics. Amazingly, Bulls guard Derrick Rose didn't receive a single vote for rookie of the year. No doubt the GMs were not allowed to vote for players on their own team, so John Paxson is off the hook. But it's hard to believe not a single GM believes Rose will be the best rookie this season. Miami's Michael Beasley led with 48.1 percent of the vote, followed by Portland's Greg Oden (remember him?) at 29.6 and Memphis' O.J. Mayo at 11.1. Three others were listed as receiving votes: Minnesota's Kevin Love, Golden State's Anthony Randolph and Oklahoma City's Russell Westbrook. I can kind of understand Love and Westbrook, but Randolph? He's averaging 4.5 points in preseason.

What's another preseason loss?

Posted by mikemcgraw on Wed, 10/15/2008 - 01:18
One of the summer's best NBA moments, in my opinion, came when lottery night was whittled down to the final three. Standing on stage at NBA Entertainment studios were Chicago native Dwyane Wade, representing Miami; Bulls marketing chief Steve Schanwald and former Bull Fred Hoiberg, representing Minnesota. Through it all, Hoiberg clung to an enormous teddy bear. I asked Hoiberg about that bear before Tuesday's Bulls-Wolves preseason tilt at the UC. He said he'd gotten to know a kid up there who had endured numerous surgeries. So before the lottery, Hoiberg called the kid and asked if he had any good luck charms to lend. He suggested the bear, which stuck with him through every surgery.

Analyzing the preseason opener

Posted by mikemcgraw on Thu, 10/09/2008 - 23:32
In a nutshell, the Bulls were completely out of synch at the start of this game. They were tentative on offense, sloppy on defense and fell behind Dallas 62-44 by halftime. The final score was 110-102, but that was only because the Bulls closed the gap late in the game with all subs on the floor. Here are some thoughts: --I suspect there will be plenty of games like this early in the season. The Bulls seem ready to ride rookie point guard Derrick Rose and he's bound to have some early growing pains.

First games should spice up a quiet camp

Posted by mikemcgraw on Wed, 10/08/2008 - 22:48
Between the baseball playoffs and the disappointment from last season's 33-49 finish, the first 10 days of Bulls training camp have been unusually quiet. The media turnout has been light. Most of the time, the three big papers, plus a Comcast cameraman and producer have been the only ones waiting in the Berto press room. Also, this year's camp has been short on storylines. We can't write about what's happening in practice, since we're not allowed to watch. Then of the 13 Bulls with guaranteed contracts, the only newcomer is Derrick Rose. But with the opening preseason game against Dallas coming Thursday, Rose has the ability to turn up the buzz real quick. The notoriously shy point guard even flashed some humor the past two days in interviews.