Bulls news and notes: February 9, 2010

Deng expected to play tonight versus Pacers:
Somewhat lost amidst all the drama surrounding Tyrus Thomas was the fact that Luol Deng missed practice on Monday because of tendinitis in his right shoulder. However, he’s expected to play tonight against the Indiana Pacers. Deng missed 33 games last season thanks to a stress fracture in his right tibia, but he’s been an iron man this season, appearing in all 49 games despite playing with a fractured left thumb.

Remember what Deng said earlier this season: “Last year when I was sitting, I made a commitment to play all 82 games this season. Even though it wasn’t my fault last year, I didn’t want anyone to say anything about me being soft anymore. That’s why I don’t want to take any game off all year. I just want to do my job.”

The Bulls do not heart Indiana:
The Pacers (18-33) aren’t a very good team. In fact, they haven’t been a very good team since The Malice at the Place. Not that Indy’s descent into mediocrity and worse has benefitted the Bulls at all. Since it opened in 1999, Chicago is 3-17 at Conseco Fieldhouse…and the Pacers’ winning percentage in these games (.850) is its best over any East opponent at home during that stretch.

Last February, Derrick Rose had one of his worst-ever games as a Bull, scoring only 3 points on 1-for-9 shooting.

Joakim Noah starring in remake of “Das Boot”:
Okay, that’s a bad joke from my freshman year German class. At any rate, the Bulls medical staff is trying to speed up Joakim’s recovery from plantar fasciitis by having him wear a protective boot and undergo both massage and electric stimulation. He also had blood was taken from his arm and injected into the foot.

I swear that last part isn’t a witch doctor cure.

According to John Jackson of the Chicago Sun-Times: “Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy — used in plastic surgery since the 1990s — has gotten more popular among athletes, getting a push when Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward credited the treatment with getting him on the field in time for last year’s Super Bowl, said Martin Leland, an orthopedic sports medicine surgeon at the University of Chicago Medical Center who is not working with the Bulls.”

Vinny tepid on Tyrus Thomas’ return:
Regarding “Tirade” Thomas’ return to Bulls practice, Vinny said: “What happened, happened. It’s over with. Hopefully, Tyrus learns from it and gets better. But, it’s not the first thing that’s happened with Tyrus. He’s got to be smarter and he’s got to be committed to the team. Today was a good practice — not for him, but for everybody and now we’ve got to move on.”

On how Tyrus can earn more playing time (emphasis mine): “Tyrus has got to run the court. Play hard. Execute the game plan. Hit open 15-foot jumpers. Be committed to the team. Same thing everyone else does. Everyone has a job on this team. Certain guys do different things better than others. Everyone knows their role, knows what they need to do and now they have to go out and do it. And the guys that go out on a consistent basis and are coachable and want to buy into the team and give us the best chance to win — those are the guys that are going to be out there. It’s a very simple process.”

Well, I guess VDN actually wants Ty chucking up jumpers…

Barkley high on Del Negro, low on Thomas:
Even though Vinny has apparently given Thomas a green light to shoot, Charles Barkley is still campaigning for Del Negro. Said Sir Charles: “If he gets the Bulls back to the playoffs, Vinny Del Negro should be NBA Coach of the Year. Derrick Rose was hurt. Tyrus Thomas was hurt a lot and crazy a lot. If he gets that team back to the playoffs after losing Ben Gordon, I think that’s a hell of a year.”

Regarding what to do with Thomas after his blowup at Vinny: ”What I would say to him? Uh, listen, say it just didn’t work out here. ‘You’ve been traded to, uh … (laughs).”

Bulls earn C+ last week:
From Pippin Ain’t Easy: “The win against Miami was big, but the 3 straight losses just helps to emphasize the Bulls inconsistencies coming off a 5-game road winning streak.”

Memo the the Bulls — Crash the boards:
According to Mike McGraw of the Daily Herald, from December 11 through February 2, the Bulls beat their opponents on the boards in 21 of 26 games. Now — with Joakim Noah first limited and then sidelined by plantar fasciitis — they’ve lost the rebound battle in three straight games. Enter Chris Richard.

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9 Responses to Bulls news and notes: February 9, 2010

  1. brantifvan@gmail.com'
    brandon1 February 9, 2010 at 3:39 pm #

    On the radio today K.C. Johnson stated that around the league the rumors are that Bulls are pushing for not 1 but 2 big acquisitions. He then name dropped Bosh and Joe Johnson. Have you heard anything on this?

  2. bullsbythehorns@gmail.com'
    Matt McHale February 9, 2010 at 4:36 pm #

    brandon1 — Bosh yes, Joe Johnson no.

    The Bulls have made it clear that they’re thinking bigger than adding just one All-Star. That’s why they want to move Hinrich…to free up extra cap space which would allow them, in theory, to go after, say, LeBron and Bosh. That’ll never happen, but why not Bosh and Johnson? That would give the Bulls a three-man core of Bosh, Johnson and Rose. They’d be set on the inside, set on the perimeter, and they’d have Rose’ slashing skills. That would be a strong team.

    However, I don’t see Johnson leaving Atlanta. The Hawks are winning and Johnson is The Man on that team. Remember: Part of the reason he left a great Phoenix Suns team was because being the fourth option grated on him.

  3. mears54321@yahoo.com'
    Tyrus Thomas February 9, 2010 at 6:07 pm #

    I wonder what would have happened if they had started Tyrus after he played so well the first couple games coming back from injury. Would he have been happier? Would he have tried harder and kept playing well? When he played well he did get starters minutes those first 3 games back from the injury. Was he happy then, or did he just want to be a starter? Did he stop performing after those 3 games because he didn’t get to start, because he stopped getting lots of minutes, or because he isn’t very good?

  4. bob.edwards47@yahoo.com'
    Boppinbob February 9, 2010 at 6:37 pm #

    I really feel that Hinrich is the key to the recent success of the Bulls. Trading him will leave a huge hole in the Bulls lineup and chemistry. I truely believe he is worth every penny he is being paid and always has been. How effective were the Bulls with Salmons and Rose starting together?

  5. tc643@hotmail.com'
    Tony C. February 9, 2010 at 10:20 pm #

    “Would he have been happier? Would he have tried harder and kept playing well?”

    Perhaps, but is still preferable that he be traded. Athletes with that kind of attitude rarely contribute to winning teams.

  6. davidpaulroosa@yahoo.com'
    AK Dave February 9, 2010 at 11:01 pm #

    Plantar Fasciitis is a real bastard and Noah is going to be in pain for a while.

    I got a case of it last year after a marathon, and for several months, I honestly thought I had broken my heel. I would wake up in the morning and limp around for an hour or two before it would loosen up. It felt like every time I put pressure on my heel, someone jammed a railroad spike up into it. I couldn’t run for months, and when it felt OK to try and went running, the pain would come back with a vengeance.

    The only thing that will heal that injury is time- real time, not a week, not even a month. Stretching and therapy and icing and e-stim and all that is great, and he may even tough out a bunch of games, but Noah will be in pain for the rest of the season.

    :(

  7. g_f@comcast.net'
    FrankG February 10, 2010 at 3:02 am #

    Re Tyrus Thomas:
    This started last year when Del Negro hardly used Thomas in Game 7 against Boston after Thomas was a key player for the Bulls in game 6 to get them to game 7.
    Skiles also treated Thomas incorrectly. Yes, he’s a millionaire BBall Baby, but with exceptional potential who has not received the consistent minutes to develop. No question he needs a more nurturing coach and watch when he is gone you will see him develop into a terrific player as he matures, given he is a very young 23.
    As far as Charles Barkley, he has become an overstuffed (talks too much) Taco Bell parady of himself.

  8. emceemarshall@gmail.com'
    killabee February 10, 2010 at 3:41 am #

    Gotta say I’ve always been a big Tyrus fan…but it’s tiresome waiting for him to reach that next level. Get rid of him.

    Hinrich tho – I dunno, I like Hinirich (KU Woot) and I think he is pretty underrated/unappreciated. But if the Bulls move him in hopes of snagging two (and that means Bosh/JJohnson) I wouldn’t care. As stated it isn’t the most likely scenario, but I would basically give my left nut for that 5. Rose/JJ/Deng/Bosh/Noah. Who knows, if they dropped Salmons AND Hinrich AND Thomas I wouldn’t care if it resulted in a big splash next year. I understand a trade at this point isn’t likely to be GREAT for the Bulls … say some of the Hinrich deal talks … but hey, if it all works out in the end I’d be ecstatic. Then again maybe the afformentioned 5 wouldn’t include Deng…not sure if he has to be moved as well…so much talk it makes me dizzy. In a good way, I guess.

  9. mkp624@gmail.com'
    mkp February 10, 2010 at 8:57 am #

    Does anyone know what Luol Deng’s shooting percentages have been by quarters over the past month? He seems to shoot well in the first quarter, and then everything dries up after that.

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