By Yusuf Gadlin
The Chicago Bulls picked up a well-needed victory 107-72 Saturday night against the New Orleans Pelicans. The Bulls played their signature hard-nose-everything-earned style of defense. They also shared the ball on the offensive end and played like a team trying to end the first half of the season on a positive note.
Derrick Rose scored 20 points on 15 shots, Jimmy Butler scored 18 points on 14 shots, and the player of the game Pau Gasol scored 20 points on 14 shots while grabbing 15 monster rebounds. This is the type of shot distribution and balance Chicago needs amongst its three stars if the Bulls want to keep winning for the rest of the season. No player on the Bulls roster should attempt no more than 20 shots a game.
It was beautiful to watch the Bulls fly around on the defensive end and play the type of defense we have come to know and love them by. The only question I have? Can the Bulls sustain and build off this quality win. Far too many times the Bulls Have been wildly inconsistent this season. Some games—like on yesterday the Bulls looked like championship contenders and on other nights they look lifeless and lazy. Its nights like these that will have the most loyal Bulls fan talking to themselves pondering why the Chicago can’t give this type of effort every night.
Who is next?
The Bulls play the Orlando Magic Sunday night. If you remember the January 12th loss then you know Chicago was embarrassed, humiliated, and torn to shreds by this young and upcoming team 121-114.
Magic Center Nikola Vucevic straight up punked Pau Gasol to the tune of 33 points, 11 rebounds and one thunderous dunk on Gasol head. Also future Magic all-star Victor Oladipo couldn’t be contained either as he burned Derrick Rose for 33 points on 17 shots. The Bulls have to be aware of the Orlando Magic leader Tobias Harris who was absent the first time these teams met. The 6’9 small forward is coming off a 34 point game against the Los Angeles Lakers, which the magic won in overtime 97-94.
Keys to victory
This without a doubt is a revenge game. I expect the Bulls to play focused, hard-nosed, disciplined basketball. The Magic took a piece of the Bulls manhood on January 12th and I suspect the Bulls will be out to get it back. The Bulls should play at a level that the Magic simply cannot reach. I’m looking forward to this game because it will show me exactly what the Bulls are made of seeing how a date with the LeBron led Cavs are around the corner.
This is a game Bulls have to have as we move closer to the second half of the season. No more lazy efforts Bulls, its time to round into form and get back to playing championship basketball.
Let’s show the Magic exactly what that looks like.