"Mellow Swag" But Still Enough
Picking up on Big Sweet's point about the 3rd quarter dominance of the Bulls of yore, last night was an object lesson in how not to come out of the half. It was a very, very frustrating loss. We managed to limit Agent
Zero Weirdo to 20 points on 5-16 shooting (a performance that qualified, in his words "mellow swag.") And Kirk finally busted out of what had started to look like a season-long slump with an impressive 33 points on 6-12 shooting from behind the arc. But once again, we couldn't play through the whole game and come away with a win. A few observations. When teams d-up on the Bulls, it can suddenyl seem like the team has no offensive focal point. That's obviously due to the lack of star scoring, but if Ben Gordon isn't hitting his shot, or is turning the ball over, it can get downright scary out there. This is going to be a big problem in the playoffs and I'm flummoxed as to how to solve it, unless Gordon becomes a lot more consistent or Hinrich takes it to the next level (something I thought he had the ability to do at the beginning of the season, but I'm no longer so sure.) Also, every time the Bulls lose, I always feel like their problems are offensive in nature: not getting quality shots, shooting too many jumpers, and not hitting easy baskets. But in the games like last night and the loss to the Suns, they ended up scoring a perfectly good amount of points, but gave up a lot of easy baskets off turnovers and long misses: last night they turned the ball over 20 times. The team's half-court defense is very, very good, but their offensive dysfunctions are creating opportunities for easy scores that are just killing them by allowing teams to go on the kinds of runs the Wizards went on to start the second half last night.