Bulls

In the post: Bulls frustrated by turnovers

In the post: Bulls frustrated by turnovers

Saturday, Oct. 16, 2010
12:04 AM

By Aggrey Sam
CSNChicago.com

--Thibodeau played Noah, Rose and Deng approximately 35 minutes apiece in the game, with the latter pair participating in the contest down the stretch, but was less concerned about their usage (I just wanted to see him at the end of the game was his explanation for Roses playing time) than he was about the teams 21 turnovers.

Its a big problem. If we dont correct it, its going to cost usWeve been high turnover three games in a row and its a close game, so its costly, said Thibodeau, who also expressed dismay at Chicagos 31 three-point attempts. Theres certain turnovers that you can live with, but wed like to have less than 14 in every game. The ones I dont like is when were holding on to the ball, dancing with the ball, the defense gets set and we try to thread the needle or go one-on-one. Youre just asking for trouble. As for his minutes, Rose only commented, After the game, of course youre going to feel all right because you just got done playing, but tomorrow when I wake up, I know Im going to feel sore a little bit.

--One byproduct of the right-heel injury that sidelined power forward Taj Gibson hes a game-time decision for Saturday nights game in Orlando was Thibodeau getting his desired extended look at Noah playing the position.

Noahs done fine. Defensively, I thought he did okay. He helped shut the lane down, his reboundings terrific. Im concerned with the turnovers; weve got to get that down. But overall now how much we do it, I dont know but hes shown hes capable of playing there some, and like I said before, there are certain situations and times during the game when you like to have that size out there. When you have two seven-footers, its hard to get the ball into the paint, evaluated Thibodeau. "Playing without Gibson and Boozer will be different because youre primary low-post scorers wont be there, but we still have to get the ball into the paintprobably more off dribble penetration and well try to get some duck-ins off pick-and-rolls and things like thatbut we still want to play inside-out.

Rose chimed in: It hurt us, especially for pick-and-pop players. It opens up the floor a little, especially with those two missing.

--Roses reasoning for the Bulls turnover issues was a combination of players making the extra pass and being flummoxed by the Mavericks zone defense.

People playing unselfish just trying to make the right play but sometimes youre wide open and you dont realize it, especially in the zonein practice, were moving the ball well, but were overthinking when were out there in the game and making little turnovers, but we can easily fix that. When people look at video tomorrow or whenever, we can easily go ahead and get that out of our game, said Rose. "That was our first time facing it zone defense. It was kind of weird at first. People that were shooting the ball that were supposed to be hitting werent in their groove tonight, but thats just one night. Weve got great shooters on this team, so if somebody does play zone again, I feel bad for them.

Added Thibodeau about Dallas defensive tactics: They played zone most of the game, so it was a chance for us to work on some zone things. Were playing two centers, so there were some good things about it. The good things were that our rebounding was much better, so that was a plus, but the negative is when they go zone, theres one less shooter on the floor.

--Although Deng who also saw minutes at power forward toward the end of the game; Thibodeau was pleased (I thought that was very effective in the fourth quarter for us) with his play was aware of the challenge of matching up with Nowitzki, its something hes used to and therefore willing to deal with until Gibson (and eventually Boozer) return, if necessary.

Every night, its someone else. Nowitzkis a great player, but Im not really going into the game expecting to have an easy task. If it happens, it happens, but the NBA especially the three and the four it seems like every team has a guy at that position, said Deng. Hes hard to guard. Hes seven feet and can shoot, and if youre up on him, he knows how to get to the basket and get to the free-throw line.

--Deng, whose improved range and accuracy from deep was one of the more underrated storylines of the offseason check his Great Britain national team box scores for proof w asnt at all surprised at his success (5-for-7 from behind the arc) on the evening.

Ive been shooting it well in practice and with the zone defense, I had a lot of good looks, he stated. We take what we get in the game. I think Coach is very smart and just seeing whats going on out there and just using us the right way. Some nights, if my shot is not falling, Ill probably look to drive more and be more aggressive towards the rim. Deng, too, had an opinion about Chicagos ballhandling miscues. Its just something weve got to work on. A lot of different lineups out there, a lot of guys getting used to each other, but its something weve got to improve on, he said. The last couple games, were not happy with our turnovers and its something weve got to focus on.

Aggrey Sam is CSNChicago.coms Bulls Insider. Follow him @CSNBullsInsider on Twitter for up-to-the-minute Bulls information and his take on the team, the NBA and much more.

Would Wendell Carter Jr. be picked higher if the NBA Draft was today?

Would Wendell Carter Jr. be picked higher if the NBA Draft was today?

According to Bleacher Report, Wendell Carter Jr. would be taken fourth overall by the Memphis Grizzlies if the NBA were to redraft this year’s class based off of Summer League performances.

It may sound like a crazy concept (and it is), but Carter Jr. averaged the second most points, 14.6, through five July games in Las Vegas. He also averaged 9.4 rebounds and shot 55 percent from the field while averaging 28.8 minutes in his glamorous first-stint with Chicago. Those numbers are even more striking if you consider Carter Jr.’s 42.9 percent shooting from behind the three-point line.

Carter Jr., the real seventh overall pick of this year’s NBA Draft, looked like the all-around player the Bulls were hoping to get this offseason. He made his blocking abilities as a center known from the moment he stepped on the court in Summer League.

In their re-draft, Bleacher Report had Chicago using the No. 7 pick on the New York Knicks’ Mitchell Robinson, who was actually taken 36th overall in last month’s Draft.

Robinson, a center, averaged 13 points and 24.8 minutes per game over five Summer League contests. He was the best rebounder on his team with an average of 10.2 in the five games that the Knicks played.

The 20-year-old took the second most shots on the Knicks and had the highest field goal percentage at 67 percent, but Robinson did not have any three-point attempts.  What made his recent production seem even more surprising was the fact that the 7'1'' big man did not play a single minute of college basketball.

But would Robinson fit in the Bulls’ system?

Chicago has taken on an offense-first mentality, so Robinson would not be as great of a fit in the Bulls lineup as Carter Jr., but he would still be an impact player. He can be compared to the Bulls’ current center Robin Lopez, who averaged a similar amount of points per game (11.8 points in 26.4 minutes) last season as Robinson’s Summer League average (13 points in 24.8 minutes). And like Lopez, Robinson will likely be most effective around the basket and in the pick-and-roll.

Robinson would also have to learn the defensive concepts that a veteran like Lopez has mastered over his 10-year career.

Next season, the Bulls will have an exciting scoring trio of Jabari Parker, Lauri Markkanen and Carter Jr. in the frontcourt. And the fact that Carter Jr. is getting so much love in the national spotlight is yet another reason for Bulls fans to be excited about this upcoming season.

Jabari Parker channels his inner Uncle Drew: This game is about getting buckets

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USA TODAY

Jabari Parker channels his inner Uncle Drew: This game is about getting buckets

The Bulls gave Jabari Parker a two-year, $40 million deal for good reason.

One, the Bulls had the salary cap space to get the deal done and had just about filled out their roster. The money wasn't going to be used elsewhere. Also, the second year of the deal is a team option which gives the Bulls some security should Parker not be able to stay healthy or play up to the standards such a salary commands.

Parker was given that money for multiple reasons. One of those reasons was not for his defense.

But, according to Parker, no one gets paid for their defense.

Speaking on 670 The Score on Wednesday, Parker was asked about whether he felt he had the ability and effort to defend in the NBA, something he hasn't done particularly well in four seasons.

"I just stick to my strengths. Look at everybody in the league. They don’t pay players to play defense," Parker said. "There’s only two people historically that play defense. I’m not going to say I won’t, but to say that’s a weakness is like saying that’s everybody’s weakness. Because I’ve scored 30 and 20 on a lot of guys that say they play defense.

"If you know the game, you also know that everyone’s a pro, right? And you know that certain guys have an average. No matter what you do, they still get that average. They pay people to score the ball, and I would hope that somebody scores the ball on me if they pay them that much. So, I’m not saying that to cop out or nothing. It’s the NBA. We’re professionals. Everybody scores. It’s just about limiting them as much as you can, trying to contain them."

Parker's right in one sense, that players are usually paid for their offensive output. There are also more tangible, easily read statistics on the offensive end than there are defensively. Heck, the Bulls gave $80 million to Zach LaVine and he was the team's worst defender last season.

But then again, defense matters. A whole lot, especially at a time when offenses are better than ever (thus making defenders more valuable). The final four teams in last year's playoffs were ranked 1st, 6th, 9th and LeBron James (29th) in defensive efficiency.

A day after Parker's comments the Celtics gave Marcus Smart a four-year, $52 million contract. He's a career 37 percent shooter and has made 29 percenet of his 3-pointers in four seasons.

So while Parker, a below-average defender, might not be entirely accurate, at least he's owning who he is. And if he scores like he did in Year 3, averaging 20 points before re-tearing his ACL, no one will care how he defends.