Drink: Cuervo Especial Margarita
One of the coolest aspects about Bulls road games this year is how Chicago fans have often outnumbered the home team. In Atlanta, where there are more Bravo Real Housewives than Hawks fans, this was embarrassingly the case again.
As the most recent “Note Bulljive” addressed, the Derrick Rose fatigue story comes up every now and then. It drives me batshit crazy. He is 22 years-old. He logs less than 38 minutes a game, which is comparable to what Jordan and Pip averaged during the Bulls 6th title run. Rose is built like a ’69 Dodge Charger and he eats Skittles regularly. Remember when you were 22 and ate pizza for breakfast, McDonald’s for lunch, candy in cereal for dinner and Taco Bell for the fourth meal while sleeping 5 hours a night? Apparently the media doesn’t.
The first quarter saw the Bulls take an early lead with Luol hitting early. The ATL’s Al Horford was up to the challenge. As the focal point for the Dirty Bird, he got busy inside and out. Rose came out of the gate his normal MVP self. At one point, he shook Hinrich and rainbowed a right-hand floater while drawing a 2nd foul on Josh Smith. It’s the kind of play that has become common majesty, but I still get geeked each time he breaks ankles and finishes with artistry. Deng blew the hell up. His three to finish the quarter, put Los Toros up 31-21. But that was just a hint of what was to come.
Unit: DJ TrainWreck started the 2nd fluidly with Deng, Omer, Watson, Taj and Brewer. Taj had a pump-fake and dunk that was defended like a pregame lay-up drill. Deng continued to be “the glue” of UDJTW. Man, remember when we all hated him and his bloated carcass contract? He’s playing with the vigilance of an ex-green beret whose daughter is being held hostage. Speaking of contracts, overpaid yawn of a player Joe Johnson under-impressed in what has been the cliché season after a big payday. Realize that you could have budgeted Reservoir Dogs for what Joe Johnson makes in one month.
The Bulls built a mind-jacking lead for the second straight night. CJ Watson tore things up like the Kool Aid Man. He effortlessly stroked jumpers and looked D Rose-y with a reverse lay-up followed by a fast break assist on a Korver 3 to put the Bulls up 22 with just under 5 in the half. UDJTW was in synch on both ends while the Hawks chucked up shots haphazardly. Then, D Rose went Skittles! He ended the half tasting the rainbow with a flurry of 3’s and a dribbling exhibition usually reserved for the “And 1 Mixtape Tour”. When Rose nailed a three at the buzzer, they went into the locker room up 72-43.
The third quarter started with the Bulls still in control. If you thought the Dirty, Dirty would put up a fight, you would be wrong. One indication was an offensive rebound that rolled to the Bulls at the three point arc. Another came off of a jump ball that fell to a wide open Bogans for a three. Another two offensive rebounds that bounced on the court before being collected was all you needed to know about the Hawks effort. “MVP” chants rang throughout the arena during D Rose free throws late in the 3rd which saw the Bulls enter the final stanza up 98-60. The only thing left to wonder was whether or not Bulls fans in Atlanta would be allowed a free Big Mac with a ticket stub.
The fourth quarter was unwatchable, unless you are Jeff Teague’s family. The King of Garbage Time scored 17 in the quarter to shake the basketball world to its core. The starters rested, Rasual Butler made an appearance, both teams combined to hit one field goal in the final 4:24. Are you still reading?
Rose finished with 30 points (6-8 on 3’s) and 10 dimes. Deng added 27 and the Bulls picked up their 51st win. They sit first in the conference with a 1/2 game lead over the idle Celtics. Kirk Hinrich and Jamal Crawford scored 2 points total as the Dirty, Dirty have now gone 3-7 in their last 10. Dozens of Hawks fans will have trouble sleeping after this one.