The Bulls are currently sitting at fourth place in the Eastern Conference standings, and have gotten there without any help form their injured All-Star point guard Derrick Rose.
It’s a testament to Chicago’s defense-first style, and to the coaching of Tom Thibodeau, who consistently utilizes the available playes in the right combinations to maximize his team’s chances.
Nate Robinson has been one of those players that has sparked the Bulls at times, most recently coming through with 18 points in 22 minutes off the bench in Tuesday night’s win over the Celtics. But he’s playing with a non-guaranteed contract, and that means the team could decide to let him go in the next few weeks.
From K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune:
The Bulls signed the veteran guard to a deal that doesn’t become fully guaranteed until Jan. 10. That means they can waive Robinson with no penalty any time before that date, an option that always has been under consideration internally.
[Marquis Teague’s] development, not to mention Derrick Rose’s expected return, could make Robinson expendable.
There’s no question Robinson has some abilities, and his athleticism is beyond reproach. You just never know what you’re going to get from him on any given night, and if the Bulls believe that Teague, along with a healthy Rose later in the season, can provide a bit more consistency, then Robinson may indeed find himself looking for employment elsewhere.
Khris Middleton has more expectations and more pressure on him after a breakout season in Milwaukee, followed by him getting him PAID this summer.
Well, he looked pretty good on this play against the Bulls, making the steal then throwing down despite Jimmy Butler‘s efforts to stop him.
Middleton finished with 10 points on 5-of-7 shooting for the Bucks. However, Butler had the last laugh as he went off for 23 points on 12 shots and led the Bulls to the (meaningless) preseason win.
Paul George‘s first experience starting as a power forward was going up against Anthony Davis — not just one of the best power forwards in the game, one of the handful of best players in the game period. That didn’t go well for George, and he wasn’t happy about it.
His second experience was in another preseason game Tuesday, going up against the Pistons and their four, Ersan İlyasova. He’s not quite as intimidating.
George scored 20 points on 7-of-8 shooting, 4-of-5 on threes — and that was just the first quarter (you can see it all in the video above).
As we have said before, George at the four is not a bad call by the Pacers, but some of that depends on the matchup. On the nights the Pacers face Davis or Blake Griffin or LaMarcus Aldridge or Zach Randolph (or a handful of others) the Pacers’ coaching staff is going to have to adjust. But there are a lot of nights where George at the four is going to force the other team to adjust, and that will play into the Pacers’ hands.