Home Nike kobe Positive Vibes Only, Nikola Vucevic’s Big Shot, A Surprising Victory Over Glass and Other Bull Bullets

Positive Vibes Only, Nikola Vucevic’s Big Shot, A Surprising Victory Over Glass and Other Bull Bullets

0

The All-Star starters will be announced tonight live on TNT.

DeMar DeRozan will be announced as an All-Star starter tonight on TNT.

• Sometimes I feel like I can overemphasize the intangible. As someone who has covered a handful of sporting events in person in the past, I fell in love with finding the little moments. The way guys interact on the sideline or look at each other on the pitch (or do not do interact on the key or do not do look at each other on the field) can tell us a lot about team dynamics. Of course, whatever actually happens in the scores and wins column reigns supreme, but the intangibles can give us the necessary context, and I think that moment from last night says it all.

• A group riddled with injuries and struggling to stay near the top of the Eastern Conference, Chicago is anchored by three stars who seem just as happy for each other as winning. In an NBA filled to the brim with dramatic tension and superstardom, it’s hard to stress how important and refreshing that is, especially for a Bulls team that’s had a storm cloud over its head. over the past four seasons.

• I think a lot of the credit for those positive vibes goes to DeMar DeRozan. The man has given more hugs this season than Barney in his lifetime. The small gesture not only indicates a happy All-Star, but it’s a sign of the leadership DeRozan brought with him. As good as LaVine has been this season, DeRozan has been the one to grab headlines with game winners and All-Star votes. He’s mostly had the spotlight on his head, but he climbs the rafters and points it at his teammates as often as possible. When the guy who made the biggest plays of the season acts this way, there’s no doubt that it has a significant positive impact on the rest of the roster.

• In the wise words of Stacey King: BANG BANG BANG, GIVE ME THE HOT SAUCE, VOOCH!

• Nikola Vucevic has received his fair share of criticism this season – some deserved, some less so. However, even in the midst of what was undoubtedly a “low” year for the All-Star big man, he still repeatedly found a way to make it big for this team. The big man’s 17 goals in the 4th quarter this season are the 3rd on the team (LaVine: 19, White: 18). If you don’t remember the importance of some of them, let me remind you…

Oct. 28: Makes a one-score game against the Knicks with 41.0 to go
Oct. 30: Gives Bulls 8-point cushion against Jazz with 1:26 left
Nov. 8: Extends Bulls’ lead to double digits against Kets with 6:57 to go (triggered a 26-11 run for Bulls)
Dec. 2: Nails the shot to put the Bulls up 105-102 with 6:11 left at MSG
Dec. 27: Hits three downtown buckets in the 4th quarter against the Hawks to stretch the Bulls to a 130-118 win
Jan. 19: Give the exhausted Bulls a 9-point lead against the Cavs with 2:27 left (continues to freeze the game with 3 more at 49 seconds)

• I think this list helps put into perspective how special and important the big man is. He easily struggled more than LaVine and DeRozan to find a consistent role and rhythm, but the Bulls aren’t getting one of their best starts in nearly a decade without him.

• Gotta give the Bulls a ton of credit for their rebound effort last night. Toronto entered the night with the 11th-highest REB % in the NBA, while the Bulls are only 21st. We saw the Raptors’ size advantage give the Bulls offensive adjustments in the second half, but the Bulls still managed to come away with a 45-34 advantage on the glass (10-8 win over the offensive boards). Vucevic, LaVine, DeRozan and Green all grabbed at least 6 rebounds in a joint effort. Hopefully they can keep that momentum going, especially in the absence of Lonzo Ball, the team’s second-best rebounder.

• Even with two straight wins, those games against OKC and Toronto showed just how much a non-Ball/Caruso Bulls team can struggle with increased ball pressure. I can give the team a little more leeway when it comes to last night’s game since the Raptors have rare length, but it’s still something head coach Billy Donovan will have to figure out how to clean up.

• I hate that Lonzo had to get injured.

• Does Justin Field want to sign a 10-day contract?

• I don’t know if this video even does the dunk justice. LaVine’s power through OG Anunoby was TOUGH.

• Very cool.

• THE BEARS DID IT!