They’re back! The Bulls handily defeated the Pistons last night, 99 to 79, thanks to the stellar performances of Taj Gibson, who scored a career-high 23 points, and Tony Snell (he’s one of the rookies, and started in his second game), who added 13. That was also a career high.
Bulls blogger Sam Smith tweeted, “Tony Snell moves into the rookie of the year conversation with eight points in the last four minutes. Conversation is: ‘Who is that guy?’”
There are times, especially during the playoffs, when you hear the Bulls, and other NBA teams, and I guess, teams in any sport say – “We really needed that win.”
This was not a nice to have. It was essential. Essential to enabling the Bulls to move on, and to helping them remember just how good they are – when they work together collectively.
And it’s not by accident that Taj and Tony lit it up. Sam Smith reported in his latest blog that Taj had his own shooting practice at a gym in the Detroit area after the Bulls arrived Tuesday night. And Thibs, in the post-game press conference said Tony doesn’t even leave the UC on the days the Bulls practice and play there. Thibs is in heaven.
And what can you say about Luol? Yes, there’s a reason the trade rumors are swirling. He had 27 points last night, and is averaging 24.3 in the last three games. Lieutenant Deng is not only one of the most talented guys in the NBA, he’s an amazing person and it setting all kinds of Bulls records in his tenth year.
And, with DRose’s injury, he could be in the running for the player with the most minutes/game again. CSNBullsInsider Aggrey Sam tweeted Lu held a finger up to Thibs. Thibs, “You’re tired?” Looked shocked, then subbed in Dunleavy. Sam Smith tweeted, “Deng gets a minute and a half to rest and back in. Apparently rested when he began crawling toward the bench asking for water.”
Sam Smith says it all better than I ever could in another blog, called, Where would the Bulls have been without Luol Deng?
Although Jo’s name doesn’t start with the letter T, he’s not going to get left out. He’s back. The energy, jump hooks, rebounding, hustle plays, and yes , even his smile. It was great to see the Bulls’ two All-Stars, Jo and Lu smiling on the bench in the final quarter when they knew we could all drive home safely, victorious.
So, I’m thankful for this win, and so happy to see our Bulls get their mojo back. So all of us can enjoy turkey today even more. I’m headed to Toronto to celebrate, even though it’s not Thanksgiving there. And no, the Bulls aren’t playing the Raptors. I guess it just wasn’t cold enough for me here in CHI.
Might not be able to catch the Bulls defeat the Cavs on Saturday night, so everyone, please watch for me.
And remember, See Red, Go Bulls, and Gobble Gobble!