Well the Chicago Bulls blew that one. With a win in the last regular season game against the Charlotte Bobcats, the Bulls could have wrapped up the third seed in the Eastern Conference playoff standings. Instead the Bulls fell apart down the stretch losing 91-86 in overtime. Now the Bulls will face the Washington Wizards in the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs. The Wizards courtesy of beating the Boston Celtics leapfrogged the Brooklyn Nets into the fifth slot. The Brooklyn Nets will draw the Toronto Raptors who took the third seed despite losing to the New York Knicks. As I watched the game last night, I noticed some things that did not look right and defied common sense. This was an important game and Tom Thibodeau made some costly mistakes that cost the Bulls the game. I’m not going to into all of them. I’m just going to talk about the biggest one. Using that ridiculous rotation minutes system of his that’s costing Carlos Boozer minutes, and the Bulls potential games going forward.
Yeah it’s me, Ronald Agers, Editor of Pippen Ain’t Easy, the best source for Bulls news previews and reviews. I’m also the Executive Advocate of the Legion of Booz, the best chance of giving the Bulls a chance of winning this series against the Washington Wizards that starts Sunday. You know why? Because the Legion of Booz seems to be the only group that realizes that the Bulls need for Carlos Boozer is starting to get more and more urgent. However after the game vs. the Charlotte Bobcats we seem to have an adversary that is standing in the way of our goal of getting out our message. His name is Tom Thibodeau, now known to Booz-a-holics as Tom ThiboBeef.
Granted the Legion of Booz is not popular these days even though the support is starting to grow day by day. Maybe we are about to shine the light on something that Bulls fans, coaching staff and management don’t want or refuse to see. I’ve been a basketball fan all my life and I have been under the impression that teams have to outscore their opponent to win. The Chicago Bulls sometimes don’t get the memo. LIKE WEDNESDAY NIGHT! I am starting to wonder if there is an underlying beef going on between Carlos Boozer and Tom Thibodeau. It does not matter how well Carlos Boozer plays starting out the first quarter, ThiboBeef will stick to the same system of playing Carlos Boozer in the first and third quarters. No matter what happens. Let’s break down the chain of events.
Carlos Boozer was very effective scoring the basketball in the first quarter. He was established early and was engaged in the game. Carlos Boozer hit his first three shots. He hit a lay up, had a jump hook and knocked down a seventeen foot jumper. What does this mean? Boozer will be aggressive. He will rebound. He will do something that will pass as a defensive stance. Some players performance is gauged by their offense. Boozer is one of those guys. Last night could have been a good night for Boozer AND the Bulls. When he was in the game in the first frame, the offense was flowing smoothly and coincidentally the Bulls led 21-16 with Boozer leading the team in scoring with eight points. Eight points! That’s better than one-third of the Bulls point total and one half of the Bobcats total. Does anyone disagree the man was playing well? Let’s keep going.
Then Boozer sat down. After that the Bulls had a small problem doing what Boozer seemed to be doing with ease…SCORE! The Bulls were leading in the second quarter when Carlos was in the game. By halftime the Bulls were down by four points 43-39. Coincidence? To all the fans out there crying over Boozer’s inability to play defense. I guess you saw the Bobcats end the half on a 20-6 run which included 11 of 12 shots from the floor. All of this included Cody Zeller dunking on the Bulls like Tom Chambers in his early days. Where was Boozer? Chilling, right along with his offense that the Bulls might have needed to stop the run in the second quarter. Ah but ThiboBeef found other players to play in that run. He used…
Nazr Mohammed, who I haven’t seen a post move out of in six months. Come to think of it, will he even be around next year? My guess is no because of the Greg Smith signing this week. Anyway, Mohammed had two points. Real impactful on the game. We are going to do a special Legion of Booz insight on the accomplishments of Tony Snell against the Bobcats.
We interrupt this Legion Of Booz report for a special report on Tony Snell…
He took one shot. Missed it. Then sat back down. Back to you.
After playing his usual third quarter minutes. The street lights came on in Charlotte and Carlos sat down for the rest of the night. In 24 minutes Carlos Boozer scored 14 points on 7-12 shooting. He was solid on the boards grabbing 11. This qualified for second in both categories. He was playing well and making an impact. Why isn’t this man playing in crunch time when based on these stats and the needs of the team scoring wise? Don’t think the Bulls needed him? Let’s fast forward to overtime.
Kemba Walker had eight points in overtime. The Bulls had six. Any questions? Ooh, ooh I have one. Where’s Carlos Boozer!
Was Taj Gibson playing well. No. In 34 minutes, Taj Gibson looked out of sync scoring four points and collecting five rebounds. He shot 2-10 from the field and had six turnovers. Doesn’t that warrant some pine time? What gives? Gibson just had an off night. I can respect that. He’s probably tired from all the minutes he has played this year. But if he’s off sit him down and put in someone who can produce. I mean am I missing something here? Seriously.
Head Coach Tom Thibodeau aka ThiboBeef is now under the watchful eye of the Legion on Booz. I’m not understanding the logic in the substitution patterns in a very important game. He gave minutes to three players that did not produce on the floor that could have been given to a guy who was the only one to shoot 50% or better from the floor. The only one to hit his first three shots. Come on everyone, tell me why. Leave your comments. I’d love to figure out why a guy that is scoring more efficiently than most of the Chicago team spends half of the game on the bench while the team struggles to score. You can scream all you want about his defense and that contract but the fact remains the Bulls could have had thee number three seed if ThiboBeef had given Carlos Boozer a chance to continue the work he was doing on the floor against the Bobcats. Just sayin.
Going into the playoffs, Tom Thibodeau is going to play seven guys exclusively. Carlos Boozer is one of them. Either support this guy and use him and his ability to score or you’ll be in Chicago praying for Carmelo Anthony in two weeks. Trust me.