Archive for the ‘ Chicago Bulls Blog ’ Category

The Chicago Bulls announced today the team has assigned forward Cameron Bairstow to the Austin Spurs of the NBA Development League, pursuant to the Flexible Assignment Rule.

Bairstow (6-9, 259) has appeared in two games for the Bulls this season, averaging 1.0 points and 1.5 rebounds in 5.0 minutes per game.

The Chicago Bulls are off to an impressive 8-4 season start, and they’re doing so with center Joakim Noah now being used as a backup. Coming off the bench for all 11 games he’s played this season, Noah is averaging 2.5 ppg, 8.4 rpg with 3.5 apg in 20.5 minutes per outing. Very good rebounding and assist numbers per minute, but still overall a quiet season for a player who was previously one of the best centers in the league. Here’s the blog reporting:

Joakim Noah having quiet season for Bulls

Because Noah Friday in 17 minutes had his fifth scoreless game of the season; he has yet to score in double figures in any game despite averaging in double figures in five of his first eight Bulls seasons. He’s had fewer than five points in all but two games.

Noah is averaging a career low 2.5 points per game along with 8.4 rebounds. He’s shooting, the rare times he does, a career low 31.6 percent and 30.8 percent on free throws for a career 71 percent free throw shooter, likely a lifetime low. He’s at a seven-year low in rebounding and career lows in blocks and minutes played and the first season in his career, at least thus far, he hasn’t started a game.

Well, he does say he has his health.

“Physically, I feel good,” Noah insisted. “Now it’s trying to figure out where I can get opportunities offensively and just helping the defense. That’s it. I’ve to be more aggressive when I get my opportunities. There are less. But I’ve still got to still figure it out. It’s tough. Just trying to figure it out; keep working. But it’s definitely an adjustment. I feel like I’m rushing a little bit. I’m making too many turnovers. I like to help the team win. I wasn’t able to do that.”

The Golden State Warriors are 14-0 and chasing history, and didn’t let the Chicago Bulls get in their way. Here’s the blog:

There is a method to that madness that has become Jimmy Butler’s life, the multiple workouts per day, starting basically every morning at 5 and pounding away.

“I want to give us the best chance of winning,” Butler was saying in Oakland late Friday night. “That’s why I train as many times as I train per day, as early as I wake up; to make my body tired and still be able to perform at the highest level.”

Butler did all he could with a decimated backcourt with Derrick Rose out with a sprained ankle and Aaron Brooks with a hamstring strain. Butler in a game high 39 minutes outscored Stephen Curry with 28 points. His nine rebounds matched the Golden State Warriors’ leader. His seven assists were a game high for both teams. But in the end, even with the Bulls trailing 94-91 with under two minutes left after Butler made the Bulls last field goal, it wasn’t enough to subdue the league’s best team as the Warriors finally put the Bulls in their rear view mirror and pulled away to a 106-94 victory.

“First of all, I thought we really competed,” said Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg. “We battled, battled them the whole game. They made a couple of big plays down the stretch. We couldn’t get it back on the other end. But if we battle like that we’re going to win a lot of basketball games this year. We wanted to hold them to 10 threes or under. We did it. (Harrison) Barnes (with 20 points) hitting the two big ones there at the end (turning a four-point Warriors lead with 1:15 left into doubles figures in seconds). We took care of the ball. We didn’t give them a lot of run outs off of turnovers and that was a big goal of ours as well. We didn’t attack well enough down the stretch. But again, you play with that kind of effort we’re going to be fine.”

And here’s CSN Chicago with more on last night’s game:

Through 42 minutes it was hard to tell which was the better team, at least until Golden State’s deadly lineup finished the night by not allowing the Bulls to get anything going offensively in the last half of the fourth.

But the Warriors’ offensive rebounding was an Achilles’ heel, giving up 15 as Draymond Green came up with more than his share of loose balls, producing an effect that went beyond his nine-point, nine-rebound night.

“Yeah, loose balls,” Hoiberg said. “Draymond Green, he’s a horse in there. He does a great job watching his body, getting in there for extra ones. Those loose balls, you’ve got to find a way to come up with those.”

Here’s CSN Chicago reporting on Bulls point guard Derrick Rose, who always seems to be getting over one injury or another and this season is averaging 12.6 ppg and 6.0 apg and shooting just 35.9% FG:

Derrick Rose still dealing with double-vision

The timetable surrounding when Derrick Rose’s vision would return to normal was as blurry as Rose’s vision itself but now it’s a bit clearer—although it’s not news that would produced immediate normalcy.

According to Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg, team doctors said Rose’s double-vision could last for three months, meaning there could be at least another month of it considering he underwent surgery on his left orbital bone on September 30.

“They said it could be as a long as 3 months,” Hoiberg said. “But it’s continuing to improve and that’s obviously a positive.”

The timetable was news to Rose when asked about it after Hoiberg spoke following the team’s practice.

“Nah, this is my first time hearing about it,” he said.

Bulls exercise contract options on Tony Snell and Doug McDermott

The Chicago Bulls announced today that the team has exercised its fourth-year option for guard Tony Snell and its third-year option for forward Doug McDermott.

By exercising their options, both players will be under contract with the Bulls for the 2016-17 season.

Both of these moves were expected. Snell started 22 games for the Bulls last season, and has started all three so far this season. McDermott is still proving himself as an NBA player but clearly has the Bulls’ interest.

Obama expected at Bulls-Cavs game

It’s the opening night of the 2015-16 NBA regular season! Here’s reporting that a pretty famous fan will likely attend Bulls-Cavs tonight:

President Barack Obama, perhaps the most famous Chicago Bulls fan in the world, is expected to be in attendance for the Chicago’s season-opening game Tuesday against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

“He loves the game of basketball,” LeBron James said prior to the Cavs’ shootaround Tuesday morning. “We all know that. It’s an honor for me to be a part of a venue and a spectacle that the president would like to come and watch. It’s an honor for sure.”

James, who teamed up with Michelle Obama last week in Akron, Ohio, as a part of a higher-education initiative, said the First Lady did not tip him off about her husband’s plans.

The Chicago Bulls announced today that the team has waived guards Jordan Crawford and Marcus Simmons.

The players originally signed with Chicago as free agents on Sept. 28, 2015.

Chicago’s roster now stands at 15.

Will Bulls use Joakim Noah as a reserve?

Here’s the Chicago Sun-Times with interesting notes on the Bulls lineup:

Derrick Rose was hitting the pads on Tuesday, while Joakim Noah was hitting the bench.

And with the games actually counting in less than a week, Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg obviously still had more questions about his roster than answers.

“Whatever is best for the team,’’ Noah said of his temporary demotion from the starting lineup to the bench prior to the 103-94 win over the Indiana Pacers. “It’s not about me right now. It’s about this team. We have to figure out ways to get better. And we will.’’

They might want to in a hurry, especially with the Bulls scheduled to tip off the NBA regular season Oct. 27 against LeBron James and the defending Eastern Conference Champion Cleveland Cavaliers.

Too many pump-fakes from Nikola Mirotic

Here’s ESPN Chicago reporting on a key member of the Bulls; a talented, well-bearded player who loves to pump-fake perhaps a tad too much:

Nikola Mirotic needs to cool it with the pump-fakes

As he made his way through an up-and-down rookie season a year ago, one piece of advice seemed to stick with Nikola Mirotic more than most. Tired of seeing the talented big man pump-fake his way out of shots, his teammates continued to pepper him with the same message.

“Niko, don’t think,” Mirotic said in April, recounting the advice. “Just shoot the ball because you’re wide open. Don’t pump fake.”

Six months later, Mirotic is trying to keep that same mentality in mind as he finds his way in coach Fred Hoiberg’s new system. When the topic of playing the 3 or playing the 4 came up recently, Mirotic responded with the most straightforward answer he could.

“The most important [thing] for me is to play,” he said.

The Chicago Bulls have waived guards Jake Anderson and Stefhon Hannah.

The players originally signed with Chicago as free agents on Sept. 28, 2015.

Chicago’s roster now stands at 17.

In preseason win, Jimmy Butler scores 23 points in 25 minutes

Here’s the blog reporting on the squad as they learn to play under new head coach Fred Hoiberg:

In preseason win, Jimmy Butler scores 23 points in 25 minutes

No one called it Freddie-ball yet. But the Bulls Tuesday seemed to be having a ball in a 105-95 preseason opening win over the Milwaukee Bucks.

“You’ve got the freedom to shoot it when you are open,” said Jimmy Butler, who had 23 points in 25 minutes and was matched by Doug McDermott with 23 points, McDermott’s all after halftime. Nikola Mirotic added 18 points as the Bulls were 13 for 39 on threes, more threes attempted than in any game last season. The Bulls also attempted 99 shots, just short of last season’s most, which Tuesday was 22 more than Milwaukee’s as the Bulls dominated the backboards even with their perimeter emphasis and had 24 offensive rebounds.

The shots were quick and frequent as the Bulls scored 68 second half points to pull away even with Derrick Rose, Mike Dunleavy, Pau Gasol, Taj Gibson and Kirk Hinrich all out with injuries or rest.

“The second half I thought we got out and moved it,” said coach Fred Hoiberg. “I thought we rebounded the ball extremely well. Anytime we can get it off the glass and push it down the floor generally good things happen. We gave up too many transition points (22-14 Bucks fast break edge). Overall, first game especially, that second half I liked what I saw.”

On the Bulls offense this season

Here’s CSN Chicago reporting on the Bulls offense this upcoming season:

[Pau] Gasol and fellow Spaniard Nikola Mirotic will be key pieces in the diversity of the Bulls offense this season, as the Bulls will employ the popular “four-out, one-in” offensive set many teams use to maximize floor spacing for drivers and open 3-pointers for shooters.

“We’ll run some four out and one in,” Hoiberg said. “We’ll run some four out and one in with two bigs on the floor, especially with Pau out there. He has proven he can make shots and he can also make plays. If you swing it to him and he doesn’t shoot it, you can get into a second side action.”

Mirotic, in theory and form, is a good 3-point shooter but the numbers say he’s a 31.6 percent shooter. Teams won’t be so quick to run out and defend a shooter with those numbers, no matter his skill set.

Apparently it’s been a point of emphasis in camp, as the Bulls hope to improve on their 35 percent efficiency last season, but they were middle in the pack in terms of attempts.

Bulls sign Stefhon Hannah

The Chicago Bulls announced today the signing of free agent guard Stefhon Hannah (steff-ON). We assume this is a non-guaranteed deal just for training camp.

Hannah (6-1, 175) spent last season with both the Grand Rapids Drive and the Reno Bighorns of the NBA D-League. In 22 games, he averaged 5.9 ppg, 2.1 apg and 1.05 spg in 16.6 mpg.

Chicago’s roster now stands at 19.

Joakim Noah is really good when healthy, in case you forgot

Here’s CSN Chicago reporting on a Bulls frontcourt that, with health, has potential to be a lot better than it’s been:

joakim noah

When the Bulls made their expected coaching change, one of the on-court changes many expected was to break up the tandem of Joakim Noah and Pau Gasol in the frontcourt.

In fact, when Fred Hoiberg had his availability on Media Day, the new Bulls coach anticipated it would be among the first three questions. The notion stemmed around Noah limping around last season and to a lesser extent, Gasol advancing in age. With Gasol being an All-Star player, the speculation was growing louder that Noah should come off the bench to balance out the floor.

But Noah feels Hoiberg should hold off on making a decision based off the tape from last year. The film doesn’t lie that the duo looked uneven last season, despite the gaudy record posted by the starting five for the few games they played together (16-5).

“I think we should give it an honest evaluation while I’m healthy,” Noah said. “Last year, I wasn’t healthy. Let’s see how it goes and then coaches can make a decision from there.”

Derrick Rose suffers injury to face

Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose is injured again.

According to the Bulls, Rose was struck in the face by an elbow during today’s practice. He was taken by the Bulls medical staff to Rush University Medical Center for testing and evaluation which determined he sustained a left orbital fracture. After consultation with several specialists, it has been determined that he will require a surgical procedure, which will take place tomorrow at Rush. After the procedure, a timetable for return to play will be determined.

SEPTEMBER 30 UPDATE: Derrick Rose’s procedure went as expected today. At this time it is estimated he will be able to resume basketball activities in two weeks. The Bulls guard sustained a left orbital fracture in practice yesterday morning.

Mike Dunleavy undergoes back surgery

Bulls forward Mike Dunleavy successfully underwent a low back microdiscectomy procedure earlier today at Rush University Medical Center. Dunleavy had experienced some occasional back discomfort over the summer which had recently worsened. Conservative measures failed to satisfactorily resolve his symptoms, therefore, the decision was made to perform the surgery. The timing is unfortunate, but it was imperative that all conservative measures were exhausted prior to making this decision. He is expected to be out 8-10 weeks.

Jimmy Butler says he is a point guard

Here is the blog reporting on Jimmy Butler, who, according to himself, is really more of a point guard. The position played by teammate Derrick Rose, who incidently happens to score a lot of points for a point guard. Anyway:

“First off, I think I am a point guard,” Butler said without joking. “So I’ve done a heck of a lot of ball screen work, ball handling, getting into the paint and still handling, floaters, all that stuff point guards do. If I get a chance, high pick and roll more. I want some triple doubles. I’ve got to get my handle right so I can pass and get it to guys where they can make shots. I told Fred. You ask what position I play, I say point guard.”

It sounds like a joke for the guy who was supposed to be a small forward replacement for Luol Deng. But having another guard who can handle the ball and allow Rose to play off the ball with Butler’s defensive prowess provides a potentially exceptional and previously unknown element to the Bulls arsenal.

“I’m very excited because I think a lot of people think my last season was a fluke,” acknowledged Butler, who is the 32nd lowest drafted player on the USA roster. “I really don’t care what they think. But I want to prove to myself it wasn’t. I want to show I can get better from last year to this year. That’s my goal, continue to get better every year like I have.

“The main thing is confidence,” Butler continued.

Here’s the Chicago Sun-Times reporting just how great it is to be Michael Jordan when it comes to business deals:

Michael Jordan reportedly made huge money off cologne deal

Jordan simply gave his permission to the fragrance company XEL to sell Michael Jordan cologne. A close adviser testified Thursday that Jordan did nothing else — but the company still paid him $10.6 million between 2002 and 2012.

Estee Portnoy, a long-time marketing manager for Jordan, also testified Thursday that a Japanese TV station hoping to produce a documentary about Jordan once offered him $100,000 to use footage of his days with the Chicago Bulls.

The footage belonged to the NBA, Portnoy said.

Video: Bobby Portis summer highlights

Enjoy this video showcasing the summer of Chicago Bulls rookie Bobby Portis:

Here’s CSN Chicago reporting on Bulls point guard Derrick Rose, who is getting positive mentions from a likely source:

Will Derrick Rose make NBA All-Star team next season?

If Derrick Rose’s playoff performance is any indication, the Bulls point guard could be in for a giant 2015-16 season.

That’s according to CSN’s Bulls color commentator Stacey King, who spoke at the Bulls/Sox Academy Tuesday and believes the league’s youngest MVP is getting back to that old form.

“I expect him to have a big year this year, I expect him to make the All-Star team, I expect him to be back to the elite player that we are used to seeing,” King said of the three-time All-Star (2010-2012). “I can’t wait to see him.”

King’s comments come on the heels of a report last week that Rose, 26, is still undecided about participating in Team USA’s minicamp in Las Vegas next week.

Basketball blog