The Bulls have been in three straight overtime periods, but this time they just could not pull it off. They started off the game well with a 4-point lead over the Grizzlies after the 1st quarter. But, the trouble started in the 2nd quarter where the Bulls were only able to score 12 points, while they allowed the Memphis Grizzlies to score 26 points. The 3rd quarter wasn’t any better for the Bulls, only scoring 13 points.
But, Chicago did manage to come back from a 17 point deficit in the 4th quarter. Hinrich only played 24 minutes due to early foul trouble and providing help on offense. Joakim Noah played 27 minutes and was benched by Coach Tom Thibodeau for unknown reasons. But, one can only speculate that the Bulls would have had a chance of winning if he had played more. Noah left the game with 10 points, 5 rebounds, and 3 assists. Luol Deng was out with a hamstring injury, so Jimmy Butler had his 1st start as a player. Butler inherited Deng’s playing time, playing 48 minutes. Jimmy Butler had 18 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals. A decent game for the bench player. Carlos Boozer had another double-double, despite a lackluster shooting night. Boozer finished the game with 17 points and 14 rebounds. Boozer and Nate Robinson had a combined 9 of the Bulls 15 turnovers. Nate Robinson had 11 points and 5 assists. But, he struggled from the field. Nate is the type of player that struggles with making decent offensive decisions that a point guard has to make. He often shoots the ball too often with unnecessary off balance shots or rarely has the ability to set up an actual play to run on offense. Last night, Nate’s flaws as a player were on display for everyone to see. He lacks the maturity to run a team and did nothing but add more issues for the Bulls.
Taj Gibson had a decent game with 10 points, 12 rebounds, and 4 blocks. He played 31 minutes due to the absence of Joakim Noah. As a team, the Bulls only shot 36.5% from the field. Their defense was only in short spurts likely due to them possibly being fatigue after going head-to-head with the Boston Celtics the previous night. The Grizzlies outscored the Bulls in overtime and won 85-82. The Bulls are only .500 (11-11) at home and isn’t really taking advantage of well…home court advantage.
The Chicago Bulls will take on Kobe Bryant and the Los Angeles Lakers on Monday at 9:30 pm ET.