Game On: Bulls @ Hornets

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Published: February 12, 2011

Matchup: Bulls(35-16) @ Hornets(33-22)

Off Efficiency: Bulls 103.3(18th), Hornets 103,4(17th)
Def Efficiency: Bulls 97.1(1st), Hornets 100.1(5th)

After a tight win on the road in Orlando last night, the Hornets get to return home and take on the up and coming 2000-2001 Philadelphia 76ers.  Err . . wait, I meant Chicago Bulls. 

Okay, maybe the parellels aren’t the exact same.  Rose isn’t quite Allen Iverson in his ball domination, and Carlos Boozer, when he plays, provides a bit more scoring than anyone on that 76ers team – but it’s still a decent analogy.   Why?  Because that 76ers team got by on tough, hard-nosed defense supplemented by a primary, not particularly efficient scorer.  That scorer was lionized and treated like NBA royalty, despite being the equivalent of what I like to call a “Scoring Role-Player”.

This Bulls team is the same.  The star is their defense, which allows them to have a great efficiency margin of +6.2 points per 100 posessions despite a middling offense.  The scoring role-player is Derrick Rose, and the lionization of him has been swift and over the top.

The key point is this game is going to be a defensive bloodbath, and whichever team manages to struggle their way to just a little bit of offense is going to win tonight.

Injuries:

Bulls: Noah remains out.
Hornets: Okafor remains out.

Positional Analysis

PG: Derrick Rose v Chris Paul
Advantage:  Even
Before most of you flip out, we need to address a few things.  I call Derrick Rose a scoring role-player, but that in no way makes him bad.  He’s got a lot of scoring skills and a good enough court vision to make him extra dangerous(and exciting) going towards the hoop.  He excels at putting in points, and he’s explosive.  What’s more, for this contrast, it matters how a player has been playing recently, and Chris Paul has been slower than usual over the past five games and has had trouble staying in front of quick players like Monta Ellis – and Rose – all year.  Yes, I fully expect Paul to run the Hornets better than Rose runs the Bulls, but you have to think about the eventual end-point of that.  Paul will generate regular, wide open shots for Willie Green, Trevor Ariza, David West, and Aaron Gray.  Rose will generate a shot for himself – or run a pick and pop with Carlos Boozer.  Given those sets of finishers, is Paul or Rose more likely to generate more points?  It’s hard to say.

SG: Keith Bogans v Willie Green
Advantage: Hornets
Wow.  It’s not often that Willie Green is more productive than his counterpart, but in this situation he is.  Bogans plays for his tough defense, and I fully expect Willie to not look like he did last night as a result.  Still, Bogans is so abysmal offensively he can only get 17 minutes a game and both Willie Green and Trevor Ariza are more efficient scorers.  Ouch.

SF: Loul Deng v Trevor Ariza
Advantage: Bulls
I’m a big fan of Deng.  His length makes him a great defender, and he’s got enough offensive talent that he will contribute efficiently enough every night.  He’s paid like a star, and he’s not one, but he’s still a good player.  In essence, he’s kinda what I wanted Ariza to be.  Alas, the Hornets forward’s offense consists of bad threes and worse shots at the basket in traffic.

PF: Carlos Boozer v David West
Advantage: Hornets
Usually I give Boozer the advantage over West, but Carlos hasn’t yet figured out his spots in Chicago and his classic efficient scoring hasn’t arrived yet.  As a result, both he and West are about equal as scorers, West tops Boozer as a defender, and that only leaves rebounding.  Looking at the season numbers, Boozer has him, but that’s only if you ignore what West has been doing since Okafor has gone down.  West has picked up the load and been pulling down 13 rebounds over the last five.  Attaboy, Fluffy.

C: Kurt Thomas v Aaron Gray
Advantage: Even
Again.  Wow.  Kurt Thomas has been an undersized center his entire career, getting by on savvy and tricks to make his way in the league and still be a solid contributer.  Though he’s playing better than he did last year, he’s still not what he once was, and though his mid-range shot is still there, his rebounding has crashed and burned.  On the other end, Gray finishes his shots at a high rate, and rebounds like a monster despite his defensive problems.  If he could stop turning the ball over at a bottom-20 worst rate, he’d be a good backup center.  I’m not really holding my breath about that though.

Bench
Kyle Korver, Ronnie Brewer, Taj Gibson, CJ Watson, Omer Asik vs
DJ Mbenga, David Andersen, Jason Smith, Jarrett Jack, Marco Belinelli
Advantage: Bulls
Here’s where the Bulls gain a major advantage over the Hornets.  Other than CJ Watson, this bench is about as solid as they come.  Asik and Gibson are great defenders with moderate scoring ability, as is Ronnie Brewer, who would start for the team if he could shoot from deep.  Kyle Korver is the designated shooter, and has re-found the shooting stroke he misplaced in Utah.  Jack is typically bad against tight defenses, but the Hornets do have some hope that Andersen and Belinelli, who have looked solid off the bench, could mitigate this disadvantage some.  Oh, and maybe Marcus will play and have one of those explosive games he puts together twice monthly.

Again, not holding my breath.  About the explosive game – or the thought he might play.

Enjoy the game!

141 comments
Adocarbog
Adocarbog

Hornets held to 35 pts in the second half by Bulls league top defense. Rose wins the PG battle just like he did last game v. D-Will. Good first half by Hornets.

L_REAZY
L_REAZY

'QueenBee' ... I wasn't saying that Chris Paul shouldn't "...be mad at the other PGs" ... I was saying that he really "...can't be mad at the ranking of (1) Steve Nash, (2) Deron Williams, (3) Derrick Rose, (4) Russell Westbrook, (5) Rajon Rondo, and then (6) Chris Paul …!" He gets offended when people tell him that he isn't the best Point guard in the league anymore. He has to play like it in order to earn that title. L_REAZY

QueenBee
QueenBee

Anybody have any idea if Demps will make a move in the next 2 weeks? How much will it mess with chemistry? Is there even any chemistry to mess up? LOL!

QueenBee
QueenBee

Marcus had it going tonight. But of course when I thought he should be in the game, he wasn't. I've said before that Monty still doesn't know how to ride his hot hand.

Monty'sDoghouse
Monty'sDoghouse

NONO. Not "doesn't know". More like "belligerently unaware".

Monty'sDoghouse
Monty'sDoghouse

I'm gonna say it. Monty's dumb*** decision to put in Marco in the 3rd quarter probably cost us this game. How Marcus has that first half and is still the 3rd SG in the 2nd, I really have no clue. SMH.

GecGreek
GecGreek

that was a bad decision, not to put Marcus in, but didn't cost us the game. We lost the game because right now they are a better team.. Their bigs are too good compared to our subs, they played great D and get some offense going thanks to that D. They didn't miss their FT. So IMHO they showed they are a better team right now.. But give us 'Mek and a little more offensivly from CP3 and we will see. I know that they haven't Noah, but Kurt Thomas+Asik+Gibson >>>>>>>>>>>> our sub bigs. Expecially when their guards and their SF are bigger then ours.

Hornet
Hornet

Chicago's D was amazing. Give credit to them. Without Mek we couldn't get any second chances so not surprising we scored a low amount of points. Move on to the next one.

QueenBee
QueenBee

"Chicago’s D was amazing. Give credit to them." Credit to Chicago. They have the best defensive pg in the league. Credit.

Forever504
Forever504

there is no way in hell a back up 2 has the same number of rebounds as your center

QueenBee
QueenBee

40% shooting, 66% ft shooting. Nope. Not gonna cut it.

QueenBee
QueenBee

Hornets left way too many points at the ft line tonight. I haven't checked but is Ariza a 50% ft shooter? Because he always misses 1 of 2.

mbdtf
mbdtf

I think more like 70ish, but yeah free throw shooting was atrocious tonight. The Bulls, on the other hand, only missed 1.

QueenBee
QueenBee

I mean I can probably put money on him missing at least 1 of 2. But other guys missed tonight too. You make your free throws you win this game. Even with CP3 not playing all that great. Make your free throws and you win this game.

L_REAZY
L_REAZY

wow ... a game that was winnable. CP3 sort of let me down tonight, and he really can't get mad at: (1) Steve Nash (2) Deron Williams (3) Derrick Rose (4) Russell Westbrook (5) Rajon Rondo (6) Chris Paul ... ... Injured or not prove us wrong Chris if you disagree!!! L_REAZY

QueenBee
QueenBee

You should change the ranking to: 1) Rose 2) Williams 3) Nash 4) Westbrook 5) Rondo 6) Felton 7) Parker 8) Wall 9) Evans 10) Paul Now that sir is a list.

JCS
JCS

You're delirious.

QueenBee
QueenBee

But we've been came to the conclusion that CP is no longer as good as those guys so why does he have to prove anything? We've already come to the conclusion but for some reason you guys keep looking for 07-08 CP3. Your'e just setting yourself up for disappointment. CP is on the tier with Steph Curry, Darren Collison and Mike Bibby.

L_REAZY
L_REAZY

I wasn't saying "don't be mad at the other PGs" ... I was saying that he really "...can't be mad at the ranking!" He gets offended when people tell him that he isn't the best Point guard in the league anymore. He has to play like it in order to earn that title. L_REAZY

QueenBee
QueenBee

Why the hell would CP3 be mad at other point guards? LOL.

GecGreek
GecGreek

you forget the defensive side, CP3 is best-defensive pg in the league imho.. Offensivly, i agree with that ranking right now

QueenBee
QueenBee

No, CP3 isn't the best anything in the league. Give that offensive title to Rose. Time to crown Rose now. I was going to say Rondo on defense but let's give it to Rose.

mbdtf
mbdtf

13 missed free throws...

Forever504
Forever504

if chris is really not 100% maybe he should take the all star game off

QueenBee
QueenBee

Are those 2 days going to make him 100%? Do players play half as hard in the ASG as in a regular game? Can he hurt himself in the next game just as he could in the ASG?

QueenBee
QueenBee

Maybe he should give his spot to Nash right?

GecGreek
GecGreek

willie with his usual stupid-and-destroing-momentum-bad-shot. Last game he wins the game with a shot like that, today it was usual Willie Green

L_REAZY
L_REAZY

Injured or not ... CP3 let's GO man!!! L_REAZY

JCS
JCS

Near the end of the 4th quarter, Hornets down 5 - this would be a superb time for CP3 to step up. Umjussayin...

L_REAZY
L_REAZY

Where is the leadership out here for the Hornets ... c'mon! L_REAZY

JayRey
JayRey

"The value of Trevor Ariza" so true !!!! If WG is not doing anything special in the next min bring MT back!!

PeeDee
PeeDee

who taught David West how to box out?

L_REAZY
L_REAZY

Belinelli, Smith, Andersen, & Banks = trade bait for Jamison! Inconsistent man look at their stat line. The only thing consistent about their stat line is that it looks similiar to the other's! L_REAZY

Forever504
Forever504

if we lose it will be because of those 11 missed free throws

mbdtf
mbdtf

Gotta love Marcus

PeeDee
PeeDee

i miss okafor :(

mbdtf
mbdtf

Rose starts the 4th. Paul doesn't. Bulls take the lead.

QueenBee
QueenBee

That hurts 95% of the time. Monty always does that. Monty seems to keep Hornets starters on the bench when the opposing teams have 1 or 2 of their starters in.

mbdtf
mbdtf

The easiest way to lose a lead is to get to the line and miss constantly... There is no reason that we should miss 11 free throws through 3 quarters.

mbdtf
mbdtf

We would be dominating if we could make some easy free throws.