Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Margin for Error

Nocioni just emailed me his "stat of the week": The Bulls are 1-5 without his namesake. (Possibly 1-6 if they don't hold on to their tenuous 5-point halftime lead against the Hawks, but it's not like 2-5 would actually change things much.)

I think that statistic really sums up what makes the Bulls by turns an exciting, maddening, exhilerating and depressing team to root for. ( Poor Matt, for instance, just seems depleted, like he really wants to get off this roller coaster.) Quite simply, this team doesn't have a lot of margin for error. They really need all their pieces a) in place and b) firing on all cylinders in order to be consistently good. When those two conditions are met, they've proven they can play with anybody. To me, the long-term question(s) is whether one can demand that those two conditions be met every night--and whether, as their younger players mature, they will be--or whether we need to add more pieces (or at least different ones) to allow for more margin for error.

This, it seems to me, is what we talk about when we talk about trading for Gasol.

UPDATE: Nocioni, since he doesn't seem to post here much any more (ahem), emailed this response to my thoughts: "Exactly. But you can't ask for a team to be firing on all cylinders on all nights. That's what stars are for, people you can go to. I really think Wallace was a mistake and I think we don't have the talent to go very deep into the playoffs. "


Blogger Big Sweet said...

Courtesy of the Daily Herald article today (although I don't generally like to get my news from the northern suburbs)

"During the NBA all-star break, Andres Nocioni brought along a do-it-yourself foot-rehabilitation kit to a fishing trip on the White River in Arkansas.

The Bulls forward spent time with his agent, Mike Cound, and reported catching several varieties of trout. He also thinks the plantar fasciitis in his right foot improved.

Coach Scott Skiles termed Nocioni doubtful for tonight’s game against Atlanta. But the Bulls forward thinks he’ll be able to play after missing the previous six games."

Looks like they got this one locked up and Noce should be back for the two huge games this weekend. That's good news.

9:39 PM  

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