Bulls Crush the Hornets

Published: February 8, 2012

The Bulls thrashed the Hornets 90-67 Wednesday night at the Hive.


It was over when: The Hornets didn’t score a point for the first four minutes.

Really it was over when: No, seriously. I titled and created this post less than six minutes into the game. It was clear that this wasn’t going to be a good night for the Hornets. I remember when I used to do this for wins…

MVP (Most Valuable Player): Joakim Noah did more than enough on both ends of the floor to ensure this one was a cake-walk for the Bulls, even with Rose clearly not even close to 100 percent.

LVP (Least Valuable Player): Jarrett Jack came back from an injury to provide the Hornets with a disgusting 2-11 performance from the floor and next to nothing as a distributor or defender.

Defining Moment: The Hornets always keep the crowd standing until they score their first points. After a timeout four minutes in, fans sat down even though the Hornets score was still zero.

That was… “Hilarious”: Will Ferrell did player introductions, claiming Carlos Boozer still lives with his mother, Luol Deng collects rare birds, Ronnie Brewer ate 20 hot dogs in an hour, and D-Rose’s favorite movie is The Notebook. For the Hornets he said Okafor minored in love in college, Bellinelli hates Italian food, and that Jack dreams of becoming a rodeo clown after basketball.

That Was… “Decisive”: The Bulls led by nine before the Hornets scored their first bucket. It was never that close again. Only Marco Belinelli’s three pointer at the buzzer kept the Hornets from setting an all-time franchise low for points (65).


Chicago Bulls 90 FinalRecap | Box Score 67 New Orleans Hornets
Trevor Ariza, SF 38 MIN | 3-10 FG | 0-0 FT | 6 REB | 4 AST | 6 PTS | -14Ariza had a tough matchup on both ends against Luol Deng, and although he didn’t get the better of Deng, he certainly held his own. Trevor was one of the brighter spots for the Hornets tonight, and considering he didn’t play very well, that’s saying something.
Gustavo Ayon, PF 19 MIN | 3-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 1 AST | 6 PTS | -12Gustavo was one of many Hornets struggling early on both ends. Monty yanked him a few minutes in as a result, but threw him back out in the second quarter where he had a nice drive and layup around Taj Gibson. He had a nice putback later in the quarter as well, but wasn’t really creating much. Defensively he drew Noah and did a decent job for the most part, but the results were less than stellar.
Emeka Okafor, C 34 MIN | 5-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 9 REB | 0 AST | 10 PTS | -22Was ineffective early on both ends and Monty yanked him quickly in favor of Kaman. When he came back in he brabbed a few boards, but wasn’t realy doing much to positively affect the team on either end. The Bulls continued to drive and get buckets inside, and on offense Okafor wasn’t able to get anything going. He did rebound well, giving the Hornets a few second opportunities on offense thanks to his bat-out’s.In the second half he continued to to struggle with Ayon on the floor. The two of them were simply overwhelmed on defense. It’s hard to fault them too much when the perimeter defense looks like swiss cheese, but they gave up ground to Boozer and Noah as well.
Jarrett Jack, PG 28 MIN | 2-11 FG | 0-1 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 4 PTS | -14Jack started, but was ineffective. Monty pulled him early in favor of Vazquez. He came back in midway through the second quarter and seemed a bit more with it, but he wasn’t the guy he’s made us expect so far this year. His shot was off and he seemed a quarter of a step slower than usual. His defense was pretty poor also.In the second half his struggles continued. The Hornets scored just four points in the seven minutes he was on the floor in the third quarter. He played some in the fourth also, but continued to disappoint.
Marco Belinelli, SG 31 MIN | 4-9 FG | 4-8 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 13 PTS | -22After being fairly invisible for the majority of the first half, Marco had a strong drive that led to free throws, a nice layup, and then a sweet floater all in the closing three minutes. It’s too bad that aside from those three minutes, he was ineffective until garbage time.
Chris Kaman, C 31 MIN | 6-17 FG | 5-5 FT | 9 REB | 2 AST | 17 PTS | -9Kaman led the way in the first quarter, scoring 10 (nearly 12) of the teams 14 first quarter points. Unfortunately, he also contributed 3 turnovers in that period. He was ice cold in the second and third quarters, and barely any better in the fourth. At least he grabbed boards…
Lance Thomas, F 12 MIN | 1-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 2 PTS | -3I judge Thomas pretty much entirely on effort (lacking tonight), rebounding (pretty solid), and aboiding mistakes (great). He wasn’t too bad tonight relative to everyone else.
Greivis Vasquez, PG 20 MIN | 2-7 FG | 1-2 FT | 3 REB | 4 AST | 5 PTS | -9Greivis had a little more success getting the Hornets offense in a rhythm than Jack. That said, he was awful tonight both as a distributor and as a scorer. Oh, his defense was crap also.
Al-Farouq Aminu, SF 8 MIN | 0-1 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 PTS | -13Aminu failed to locate his man for what should have been an easy box-out early in the second quarter, and Monty pulled him immediately after. Monty put him back in a few minutes later, and Aminu returned the favor by botching what should have been a transition bucket. He has a ways to go before he’ll even be able to give decent minutes as a backup.
Xavier Henry, SG 19 MIN | 2-4 FG | 0-1 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 4 PTS | +3Xavier had an impressive drive early in the second, initiating contact and drawing an and-one, which he bricked. He repeated the feat late in the fourth, but didn’t get the call. He was one of only a few Hornets who was really active all game long, and I came away feeling a bit better about his future. I still think the jumper is worse than advertised, but his passing and ball handling are a bit better.

Five Things We Saw

  1. In the first six minutes of the first and third quarters, with mostly their starters on the floor, the Hornets scored a total of 6 points.
  2. The Hornets had just 41 points with just under a minute to go in the third. They managed to get up to 46 by the end. Yay?
  3. Monty had way too many starters in the game after it was WAY over late in the fourth. Considering they have 14 games in the next 29 days, many of those on the road, he could have probably given Ayon, Jack, and Ariza more rest.
  4. The Bulls had 58 points in the paint. The Hornets had 67 points total. Speaking of low numbers, it was only because of that Marco Belinelli three pointer at the buzzer that the Hornets avoided their lowest scoring regular season game ever (65).
  5. Even though this was a brutal loss, it’s still left me with a better taste in my mouth than the loss to the Kings.


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