The Bulls defeated the Pacers last night, 92 to 90. This was after having blown a 21-point lead! I was going to have to change the title of this award-winning (that’s a joke) blog to “Things Fall Apart.”
But thankfully, surprise – Jimmy Butler saved the day AGAIN, with a three-pointer and that was that. The Bulls are now on a seven-game win streak.
Everyone is running out of adjectives for Jimmy. You’ve got coaches (Dwane Casey of the Raps) with man crushes and everything. “I don’t think anybody projected him to be where he is now and my hat is off to him and the way he has worked and developed his offensive skills. I’ve been in love with him, a man crush on him for a while.”
Tom Thibodeau used to say of some of the players last year that they did everything – even the laundry. I think he was referencing Taj or Jo at the time.
That got me to thinking about Jimmy being everywhere and doing everything. We’re beyond a body double. Now we’ve got three of him. Kind of like “The Three Marias,” a maid service a friend of mine uses when her place needs some deep cleaning.
The Marias are evidently whirling dervishes. Kinda like Jimmy. He scores on one end, runs to the other end, steals the ball, and goes back and makes another basket. Or something like that.
Anyway, Neil (happy birthday, by the way) and Stacey were impressed with JB’s ability to do it all – even the laundry. And I don’t even think The Three Marias do that.
So what’s not to love about this team? Just one thing. I’m a bit nervous about Taj. The team is talking about how everyone has to make sacrifices for them to win the championship. It seems that Taj, who should be a starter, and who single handedly enabled the Bulls to even survive the playoffs last year – he’s not himself.
K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune tweeted last night during the game:
“Subtle thing but after Scola scored on Gibson at 3rd quarter buzzer, E’Twaun Moore noticed Gibson hung his head. Ran over and patted him on back.”
So here are my late Christmas and New Year’s wishes – that Taj gets back to his old self again, and gets the accolades he deserves, and Jimmy continues to play lights out, and makes the All-Star team.
Oh, and the Bulls make it to #1 in the East, and everyone stays healthy and we’re all at the Finals and June and the weather is beautiful (75 degrees and sunny) for the rally in Grant Park.
Here’s what Derrick had to say a few days ago, and he had a really great quote about how everyone on the team really likes each other too…but I can’t find it now. I really could use an assistant.
“I know my teammates, know how good they are individually, know how good we are as a team. It just takes us jelling, having that time to really play with each other, play through mistakes, play with different lineups.
“I’m seeing how guys are really professional. It goes from the rookies to the oldest vet. I saw that back when I first saw the team, practiced with the team.”
But back to last night. “The lesson we learned is you have to keep playing,” Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said. “No lead is safe in this league.” So they got that over with – the teachable moment.
This evening, it’s a return to the UC and another meeting with the (Brooklyn) Nets. At least they won a game last night versus the Kings, so I won’t feel so bad when the Bulls beat up on them.
Beat the Nets.