What to Watch For: Chicago Bulls vs. Brooklyn Nets

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Oct 10, 2015; Winnipeg, Manitoba, CAN; Chicago Bulls forward Bobby Portis (5) looks to slam dunk during the fourth quarter against the Minnesota Timberwolves at MTS Center. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

Does Bobby Portis make his debut?

It was a little surprising that Bobby Portis didn’t see any time considering how well he played during the preseason. During the 21.7 minutes per game he played in the preseason, Portis contributed 11.1 points per game and 9.1 rebounds per game (a team-high average). He played with a lot of energy and scored the ball at an efficient rate (44.1 percent), while also showing off his range. Portis led the team in three-point percentage as well (50 percent).

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The Bulls and Cavaliers were in a tightly contested game for most of the night and it seemed like every combination down low worked. Everyone contributed in some way, whether it was offense, defense or on the boards. There are good reasons why Portis didn’t see any action, but I think most people expected to see him last night.

The Bulls are expected to blow out the Nets tonight, and if that’s the case, then Portis should make his NBA debut. I think he will see some time no matter what because it’s the second game in a back-to-back. It’s no secret that Chicago has an old front court that has dealt with injuries in the past. Hoiberg did a nice job of splitting up minutes so guys weren’t overworked last night, but that means minutes might go down even more tonight.

Noah banged knees with Richard Jefferson and caused him to miss the rest of the game. It’s something to watch for. He should be fine, despite the TNT crew making it a lot bigger deal than it needed to be.

This is a team you want your rookie to make his debut against and I think this will be the first time we see Portis in a real game. However, if the Bulls front court plays as well as they did last night, then it will be harder than expected for Portis to crack the lineup in any game.

Next: How will the rotation look in a back-to-back?