Bulls

Preview: Bulls travel to Detroit to battle Pistons tonight on CSN

Preview: Bulls travel to Detroit to battle Pistons tonight on CSN

Watch as the Bulls take on the Pistons on Monday night on CSN and streaming live on CSNChicago.com. Coverage begins at 6 p.m. with Bulls Pregame Live. Then stick around after the final buzzer to watch Bulls Postgame Live for highlights and analysis.

Click here to watch the game or download the NBC Sports App, your home for live streaming coverage of the Bulls.

FIVE THINGS TO WATCH

1. The point-guard carousel continues. In Saturday's loss to the Clippers, Jerian Grant got the start but played just 10 minutes. Rajon Rondo looked good with the second unit but is a game-time decision. Cameronj Payne played 11 ugly minutes and Michael Carter-Williams didn't get off the bench. Until Fred Hoiberg figures out how he wants to rotate his point guards it's going to be something to watch each night. Expect Grant and Payne to log major minutes if Rondo, who's played the best of all of them lately, can't go.

2. Andre Drummond feasting. The rebound machine that is Andre Drummond has done some of his best work against the Bulls. While he's been quiet in two games against Chicago this season (averaging just 12 points and 7 rebounds) he's averaged 13.0 points and 13.2 rebounds in 18 career games against them, including three of his 12 career 20-20 games. The Bulls did a solid job against DeAndre Jordan on Saturday (14 rebounds in 31 minutes) and will need to do the same against Drummond.

3. Playoff implications. Heading into Monday's game the eighth-seeded Pistons sit a single game back of the seventh-seeded Bulls in the East playoff race. They play again at the end of March in Chicago, but a win for the Bulls here would give them at least a season series split (they've split the first two games this season) which could be important come seeding time. The No. 8 seed, of course, will likely face the Cavaliers in the first round.

4. Getting Jimmy going. Jimmy Butler is still the Bulls' best player. That much is clear and won't be changing anytime soon. But the reality is he just hasn't been himself of late, even if the Bulls are still winning. He attempted just seven shots on Saturday, and over his last eight games is shooting just 38 percent from the field. The Bulls are pulling their weight around Butler, but that isn't a long-term winning recipe.

5. The Bobby Portis Show. He didn't finish strong on Saturday against the Clippers (no one on the Bulls did) but Portis still managed to finish with 11 points and seven rebounds. That gives him 12.1 points and 6.8 rebounds in 23 minutes over his last eight games, five of which he's started. The Bulls are going to give him as much run as they can down the stretch, and he'll be tested against Marcus Morris and Tobias Harris when the Pistons go small.

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Seven years ago today LeBron James slammed the Bulls' championship window shut

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AP

Seven years ago today LeBron James slammed the Bulls' championship window shut

The Bulls couldn't have known it at the time, but when LeBron James blocked a Derrick Rose 3-point attempt in the final seconds of Game 5 in the 2011 Eastern Conference Finals, it was the closest those Bulls would ever get to the promised land.

It happened on May 26, 2011, seven long, long, long years ago today.

The game was an ugly one and certainly a fourth quarter the Bulls would love to have back. They took a 12-point lead on a Ronnie Brewer 3-pointer with 3:53 remaining. The Heat closed the game on a 19-4 run, with James' emphatic block on Rose the lasting image of the series.

James finished with a game-high 28 points and 11 rebounds, and added six assists, three steals and two blocks in 46 minutes.

Rose went just 9-for-29, finishing the series shooting 35 percent from the field after being named league MVP over James.

It's probably unfair to say James and James alone shut the Bulls' championship window. Rose's ACL tear the following postseason realistically was the biggest culprit. But these Bulls had won 62 games, had homecourt advantage, had the MVP, the Coach of the Year and all the momentum. And still they couldn't get it done against James.

That win also sent James to the NBA Finals for the first time since 2007. He's been there every year since, though that could change as he faces the Celtics on Sunday in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals.

Steve Kerr told a Michael Jordan Bulls story to give advice to Kevin Durant

Steve Kerr told a Michael Jordan Bulls story to give advice to Kevin Durant

Anyone who lived through the Michael Jordan Bulls remembers those games when he was putting up tons of points, but the Bulls were still struggling overall.

Steve Kerr referenced one of those games to give advice to Kevin Durant during Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals. The TNT broadcast caught the conversation and aired it late in the third quarter.

"When MJ was with the Bulls, we had a playoff game," Kerr began the story. "He kept trying to score and he was scoring, but we weren't getting anything going. Phil Jackson said 'Who's open?' He said, 'John Paxson.'"

Paxson scored 10 of 12 points for the Bulls during a fourth quarter run in Game 5 of the 1991 NBA Finals, the series clincher, and famously hit the game-winning shot in Game 6 of the 1993 NBA Finals to clinch that series. Kerr, who later hit his own championship-winning shot on an assist from Jordan in 1997, was trying to get to get his teammates involved.

"I want to trust your teammates early," Kerr said. "What you're doing is you're getting to the rim and then you're trying to hit him. I want you to trust the first guy and then move. Still attack, still look to score, but trust these guys, OK?"

Watch the video above to see the interaction.

Durant scored 29 points in Game 5 to lead the Warriors, but Houston took a 3-2 series lead with a 98-94 win.