Not only will Richard Hamilton makes his Bulls debut Tuesday, he'll be a starter.

Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau ended the speculation after the team's Tuesday-morning shootaround.

"He's going to play," said Thibodeau. "We're going to change up the starting lineup. Rip's going to start tonight; Ronnie Brewer is going to be with the second unit."

"We'll see when Hamilton gets out there, what he can handle, he added. "I just want to see improvement from our last game...I'd like to see us take better care of the ball, I'd like to see us finish our defense better, so those are two of the primary things."

Hamilton discussed his feelings on his first game as a Bull, playing a familiar foe in the Central Division rival Pacers -- he saw plenty of Indiana as a longtime Detroit Piston -- in the preseason contest.

"It's a great chance to get out there with the guys and play in a game situation," said Hamilton. "The crazy part about it is, I'm nervous before every game. Once the ball's thrown up, I'm ready to roll. It's the anticipation of getting back out there playing."

Hamilton said he's gradually adjusting to the new system.

"Still learning. I'm more comfortable when we go up and down, and scrimmage, because you're playing off reaction," he explained. "But every day, I'm getting better."


"You can't put a time limit on it," Hamilton went on to say. "On this team, there's no ball hogs. Guys always try to make plays for each other, guys always help each other out and when you have that, it makes the game so much easier because during the regular season, you can get different plays just off individual talent, but once the playoffs start, you really need your teammates."

Brewer, who started the preseason-opening win over the Pacers, was diplomatic about the move.

"I talked to Coach about it earlier today and he just wants to give a different look. It's fine with me. I'm comfortable playing with either group. Last year, I played the entire season with the second unit, 'Bench Mob,' we had great chemistry and that's one of the things we talked about," he said. "I just want to play. It doesn't matter what role I'm playing in," he continued. "Hamilton has been doing a phenomenal job.

"He's picking it up offensively and defensively."