Its almost scary how successful #TheReturn is going so far:
- Derrick is staying healthy and appears stronger.
- He looks just as fast as he was before.
- Seems ok as his minutes are slowly increasing.
- The outside shot is fluid.
- He’s moving ok on that knee.
Almost too good to be true. The regular season will show just how adept Derrick is at scoring against elite defenses and if he can elude traps and longer defenders. Paul George was placed on him late in the 4th and he turned the ball over so the Bulls will have to react quickly to the ball (and be ready to do something with it) after pressure is applied.
Bulls got off to a slow start. The defense wasn’t that great to begin the game and the Pacers took advantage. They were quicker to the ball and outscored the Bulls 29-21. Bulls also shot a putrid 32% vs. 55% for Indy to start. The first half included a 16-0 run by the Pacers and the Bulls wouldn’t retake the lead til’ late in the 3rd when they pulled ahead 61-60.
The game remained tight and missed FT’s by Indiana down the stretch cost the Pacers a chance to win. They were 23-35 on FT attempts.
Derrick led all scorers with 32 pts. on 9-15 shooting (4-7 on threes)… 4 rebs and 9 assists in 32 min.
After an impressive outing by the rookie Tony Snell against Detroit, he went 1-7 (0-3 on threes) for 3 pts in 17 min.
- Noah has been shut down for a week per the Bulls… Don’t want to risk things since he experienced some minor, lingering groin pain after playing in the Detroit home opener.
- Jimmy sat again with a left knee contusion… We might not see him til’ the regular season opener against Miami.
- There was some buzz going around about comments Derrick made prior to the game about Indiana not being a real rival of the Bulls. The Indy Cornrows blog interestingly made a big deal out of this by showing a bunch of examples of how the Pacers are a rival. With Derrick being out of commission since April 2012, I would have to agree that any budding rivalry we had with these guys was kind of put on hold. Also, with the departure of Tyler Hansbrough, Jeff Foster and Dahntay Jones there are not too many “enforcers” left on the squad so I understand Derrick’s point. Definitely don’t hate the Pacers like they do the Heat. No contest there.
- Kirk Hinrich left the game with a potential concussion (incidental contact with Murphy’s knee), which is what seemingly led to Derrick being put back into the game at the 5:50 mark of the 4th quarter. He played 32 minutes, up from the 22 he logged vs. Detroit.
The decidedly “new look” Milwaukee Bucks come to the UC on Monday evening. 7PM on CSN. We’ll be in-game tweeting from @ChiTwnBullsBlog and instagramming from ChiTownBullsBlog. Follow us for the latest!