Drink: Wrongo Dongo (Portuguese red wine)
I am not going to check back on the stats (it would be too painful), but I think the Bulls made something like 3.5 FGs in the first half. If you were able to separate yourself from being a Bulls fan and just observe it as an early season game (as I did), it became comical. What was more comical was that the entire time it was happening, I honestly believed that the Bulls were still in the game (yes, even at the 19-point deficit mark), as they were playing the ATL, dirty, dirty Hawks. A little shot of humble juice for yours truly: I took the 182-point over bet on this contest.
Why did I like the Bulls chances?
1. The Atlanta Hawks are the best “good” team to come from behind against. They are an erratic team (in effort and execution) on both ends of the court and boy, do they love to settle for lazy jumpers. This game proved to showcase these traits. The ATL started by moving the ball around with great force in the first and opened up the Bulls famed D. But, I guess that was working too well for them and they played H.O.R.S.E. for the most of the last three quarters.
2. The ATL was playing a road back-to-back after beating the “lock to win the East,” Heat – meaning that their legs were sub-fresh.
3. The Bulls have this reigning MVP character named Derrick Rose, and Da Rose has put this team on his back in the fourth time and again.
4. While the ATL had a sizable lead, they were not shooting well (not Bulls-godawful, but not well, nonetheless).
The end result was a very entertaining closeout to tonight’s game, if you were able to endure all the hell that proceeded it.
What was most interesting was a common trend that is rather curious and possibly nerving: Noah and Boozer becoming cheerleaders in the fourth quarter. I started worrying about this strategy in the playoffs during last year’s playoffs, but chalked it up to the pair being at varying levels of healthy and Thibs improvising with whatever line-ups worked. Now this season has dawned and we see the same site as the Bulls charged back tonight with Noah only seeing a few seconds on the court* and Boozer none. Logic has it that you want your best line-up out there for crunch-time. Does the Bulls best line-up not include their two starting bigs who are getting paid a grip of money?
Eh, the season is young and it will be fun/unease story to track. It is hardly the only question to arise. Will Omer Asik always look like it is the first time he has ever touched a basketball when it falls into (or bounces off of) his hands? Why did the ATL not run a lob every play and set the single-game scoring record? Why do the refs hate Noah this year? Why does Korver ever see the court? What is this growth on my tongue?
Stay tuned and keep reading, Bulls fan. I will try to answer them all.
*What a glorious few seconds they were! The Bulls/Thibs demonstrated that there is an option to running a straight isolation play at the end of the game. What crazy option might that be? Why the kids down at the soda shop are calling it a “play.” Ah, kids and their obnoxious fads.