Video surfaced Friday morning of the United Center scoreboard being taken down and disassembled. In its place will go a "state-of-the-art scoreboard and fully immersive arena audio system" for the start of the Bulls' and Blackhawks' 2019-2020 seasons.
Here's what the new scoreboard will feature, per the press release:
• 8,600 square feet of 4mm pixel pitch displays, making it the largest center-hung screen display with the highest resolution technology among all arenas that host both NBA and NHL teams
• Nearly four times more LED screen display than the existing scoreboard
• Kinetic movement with six independent panels
• First-of-its-kind, continuous inner ring display
• Immersive audio, production lighting and more
The new inner ring will "provide video and stats to fans closest to the floor or ice, while the increased panel size and image clarity will enhance the view from all other perspectives, including the 100-, 200-, 300- and penthouse levels." Which means, if you're sitting courtside at Bulls games or along the glass at Blackhawks games, you can get the benefit of the screens on the scoreboard other sections get without having to strain your neck looking up.
“This new scoreboard allows us the opportunity to take the in-game experience to the next level,” Sergio Lozano, Senior Director, Scoreboard Operations, United Center, said in a press release. “Fans will be blown away by the remarkable scale and unique capabilities leading to a truly captivating in-game experience.”
Along with this new scoreboard, the United Center is "installing a fully customized, production-level sound system that will deliver more balanced, seamless and powerful audio to fans and visitors of all events."
Over the next month we'll be recapping each of the Bulls' individual 2018-19 regular seasons.
Preseason expectations: The Bulls clearly had moved on from Cristiano Felicio after last season, when he averaged 17.8 minutes and couldn't even crack the rotation for a 27-win team until they were in full tank mode. Expectations were lowered further when the Bulls spent the seventh overall pick on center Wendell Carter Jr., pushing Felicio further down the depth chart behind the rookie and Robin Lopez. He was emergency depth and nothing else. Granted, the Bulls needed it after Carter was lost midway through the season after thumb surgery, but no one expected all that much from the 26-year-old center. He simply never panned out and there was little, if any, upside to get excited about.
What went right: To his credit, Felicio provided the Bulls with some nice minutes in the wake of Carter's thumb surgery. He had a pretty nice stretch in March in which he averaged 11.2 points on 63 percent shooting and 6.6 rebounds in a five-game stretch. He reached double figures in four of those games, including a 15-point performance on 7 of 11 shooting in a home win over the Wizards. It was a lone bright spot in what was another lost season for Felicio.
What went wrong: He just doesn't provide anything on the defensive end - he had seven blocks in 746 minutes - and his offensive game is incredibly limited. He actually has a good feel for when to roll and his footwork is solid, but his hands aren't all that great, he's not very physical for being 265 pounds and he doesn't have great range - he was 4 of 18 on shots outside of the paint. There isn't a whole to say that isn't already known.
The Stat: 7 in 700
As previously mentioned, Felicio's block totals were incredibly low. In fact, he became just the 23rd player listed 6-foot-10 or taller to block fewer than 8 shots in more than 700 minutes. Here's the list, and it's not a great one to be on for someone who isn't a 3-point specialist.
2019-20 Expectations: Maybe, maybe, maybe Felicio puts in an incredible amount of work this summer and lands himself the backup center position behind Carter. That's a huge if. The Bulls almost certainly are going to address the position in the wake of Lopez's free agency. That being said, expectations are low. The more realistic scenario is Felicio riding the bench, playing garbage time minutes and perhaps being used as a trade chip in 2020 as an expiring contract. That's about it. The Bulls swung and missed, and last season didn't change that.