Well, that was certainly one to forget. Eww, Bulls stink up the joint and get clobbered by Portland. I said before that we would have likely lost this game with EVERY Bull suited up (even Rose, gasp! We do lose games WITH Rose sometimes, people seem to forget… I’m getting so sick of these fair weather, low-information, silly fans, but I digress…)
Where was I? Oh, the game. Yeah, Portland is really on a roll and in the West (as was made very apparent by the Suns last season winning 48 games and still MISSING the playoffs), EVERY game counts and they are coming together nicely… Top 10 in rebounding (leading the league), points allowed, points per game and assists. They are honestly playing the game the way I’d like to see Chicago play later in the season.
Game Synopsis: Portland jumped out to a 26-9 lead and the Bulls never recovered. The bench managed to pull to within 4 at the 7:20 mark after a 10-2 run led by McDermott, E’twaun Moore and Mirotic. Blazers would immediately regroup after taking a full timeout and getting Lillard and Matthews back in the game. They seemed to make jumper after jumper (not too different from other occasions when we’ve played them) and pushed the lead back out to 61-43 by the half.
Game Changer: Bulls inability to get their offense going in the 1st just killed them. Hinrich being out always, always hurts us. No matter how fans complain about his shot selection and percentages, he still runs the team efficiently when called upon to start.
Peak Performer: N. Mirotic CHI (24pts 11rebs 2asts 0stls 0blk) 35min
Weak Performer: Jimmy had a bad game for him (3-13, 9 pts.), but I’m convinced he’s playing through an injury sustained in the Kings game to his shoulder. He avoided contact (1 personal foul) and neglected to draw fouls on opponents (2 FT attempts). The limited minutes (27) for him likely helped him to be ready for Utah tonight.
Main Hashtag: #CHIvsPOR
- Derrick missed his 7th game of the young season (4th consecutive) to continue to treat that mild hamstring pull suffered in the Toronto win.
- Pau missed his 3rd game to rest a strained calf.
- Kirk missed his 1st game of the season with a chest contusion suffered in the Kings game.
- Taj Gibson rolled his ankle and had to leave the game in a walking boot and crutches. He has since been sent home to be evaluated… This is the 3rd time in 7 months that he’s rolled the same ankle. Get well soon Taj. We got 4’s to back you up.
- This loss marked the Bulls stunning SEVENTH in a row in this arena. Its the longest streak that the Trailblazers franchise has currently in terms of consecutive wins over an opponent.
- This loss also marked the first time the Bulls have lost consecutive games this season.
- This game took place almost a full year to the day Rose tore his medial meniscus and ended his season.
Bulls are in jeopardy of losing their third straight… Even though when I made the prediction last week that we would beat the Jazz 104-93 I didn’t know we’d be down potentially 4 players, I STILL think we win this game, but we won’t score 104 pts. I’m thinking more like 93-88… We’ll see. Bulls will need a big game out of Aaron Brooks and Mirotic and if Dougie can get off, all the better.
Both Pau and Rose are game time decisions, Kirk is definitely still out with that chest contusion and Taj is back home. We still have the vets leading the locker room, Thibs “next man up” philosophy is always appropriate for the Bulls and these players are hungry. Might as well see what they can do. We need to move the ball, stay out of foul trouble, protect the paint and force long 2’s. We should still be able to do that with the personnel that we have.
I’ll be in game tweeting from @ChiTwnBullsBlog… Follow us for the latest, #SeeRed.