Chicago Bulls Preseason Game No. 7: Pregame Notes vs. Indiana


The Chicago Bulls conclude their home slate of games in the preseason on Tuesday night at United Center against long-time division rival Indiana. Here’s a few pregame notes before Tuesday’s tip-off.

If this was the regular season and the Chicago Bulls started 2-4, there would be a few people calling for Fred Hoiberg’s termination in Chicago. No, that’s not a joke. Remember when Erik Spoelstra started 9-8 with the “Big Three” in Miami in their first season together? Yeah, it’s not crazy to think people would overreact to six games.

But, for Hoiberg and the Bulls, it’s just the preseason and there’s plenty of work to be done. Despite losing three straight games to New Orleans, Detroit and Charlotte on Monday night, the Bulls can still take some positives into Tuesday’s night game against the Indiana Pacers. Joakim Noah looked like his old self against the Hornets and the Bulls should be getting Pau Gasol back into action on Tuesday night against their division rivals from Indianapolis.

ALSO AT PIPPEN AIN’T EASY: Bulls in the 2015-16 NBA GM Survey

In the four meetings between the Bulls and Pacers last season, the two teams split the meetings, with each team winning a game on the other’s home floor. Of course, all four meetings didn’t involve Pacers superstar wing Paul George, who suffered a broken leg last summer during Team USA’s scrimmage in Las Vegas.

Before Tuesday’s tip in Chicago, here are a couple pregame notes for both teams.

Will Tuesday bring the starting lineup for next Tuesday’s night opener?

Pau Gasol took the night off on Monday for extra rest, but should be expected to play on Tuesday night against the Pacers. With Gasol possibly back and inserted into the starting lineup, one can only expect Gasol and Mirotic will be paired together in the frontcourt. Throw in Jimmy Butler and Tony Snell on the wings, and either E’Twaun Moore or Kirk Hinrich as the lead guard, and Tuesday could be a preview of next Tuesday night’s opener.

It’s becoming certain that Doug McDermott will be a scoring option coming off the bench, along with guys like Taj Gibson and potentially the rookie Bobby Portis. Tuesday could bring a clearer picture of the Bulls rotation.

Pacers plan to “go big” on Tuesday night

The Pacers will roll out a starting lineup of George Hill, Monta Ellis, Paul George in his natural small forward position on the wing, Lavoy Allen and Ian Mahinmi.

“Starting big,” [Pacers head coach Frank Vogel] said about the Tuesday lineup of Hill, Ellis, George, Allen and Mahinmi. “I want to see what that rotation looks like.” The Pacers will have Solomon Hill available for Tuesday’s game, but new acquisition Jordan Hill will sit due to a sore back.

Tip-off on Tuesday night is scheduled for 7:00 PM CT from United Center.

Next: Bulls Preseason: Bulls lose another, but Joakim Noah shines in Charlotte

More from Pippen Ain't Easy