Don’t look now! The Chicago Bulls are 3-0 on the young season, with victories coming over Boston, Indiana & Brooklyn. Quality victories? Maybe.
BOS & IND were on the second night of back-to-backs and BKN just isn’t very good.
3-0 is nice but it doesn’t tell the entire story • CHI leads the league in points/game (113.7!), is second in rebounding (53.3) & assists (28.3)
The chemistry seems to be a lot better – Fred Hoiberg’s lineup is coming along nicely. Here’s a few notes from last night’s 30-point W over BKN:
- Taj Gibson…is in line for a monster year • Gibson started off strong v. BKN, hitting his first four shots and working on the glass. Even though Taj doesn’t shoot threes, he’s a great fit next to Robin Lopez because Lopez is a threat to knock down open Js – giving Taj room to roam the paint, flash, and finish roll catches after screening.
Taj finished w/ 14 & 11, his second double-double in 3 games
Jimmy Butler & Dwyane Wade…are Hoiberg’s second-unit shot creators • Last night, Hoiberg subbed out Wade around the 5-6 minute mark, shifting Jimmy to SG & bringing Doug McDermott in at SF. Once the quarter wound down, Wade was inserted at the 2 & MCW* came in for Rajon Rondo, giving D. Wade more responsibility to create (MCW & Wade also play well together defensively – deflections on deflections).
Later on, Hoiberg subbed Wade for JB and brought in Isaiah Canaan at the one, giving Jimmy a chance to create. So far, Hoiberg’s found a way have 1 of the 3 Alphas on the court at all times.
Isaiah Canaan…is instant offense? • Canaan is finally playing shooting guard, his more natural position. When MCW, Wade, Jimmy and/or Rondo are out there, they look for Canaan spotting up for ‘hop triples’ – Canaan hit three straight bombs to help Chicago blow the game wide open. He finished w/ 15 points and 6 assists in 22 minutes:
*MCW left the game with a sprained left knee, expected to miss 3-4 weeks