What was noteworthy in this game is that nobody seemed to get hurt. The starting five, including Derrick Rose played in this game and it made a difference, as the Bulls rather easily took care of Brooklyn. It was a 47-42 game at half-time and Chicago broke it open on a 29-21 third frame.
Jimmy Butler again lead the Bulls with 26 points on a variety of shots, some close, some 14 feet away. His scoring touch improves almost per game. Pau Gasol scored 25 steady points and hauled in 13 boards. Derrick Rose scored 14 quiet points on 5-12 shooting. He had some beautiful assists. Tonight he acted more as a facilitator than scorer. Some nights he doesn’t have to be Derrick, the point getter. I think the Bulls would be happy with other guys having strong games, and Rose, just chipping in and passing the ball. Chipping in for him is scoring in double digits.
Joakim Noah showed leadership, energy, and grabbed 10 rebounds. He wasn’t called on to score, Butler and Gasol made sure of that. Forward Nikola Mirotic had another good night off the bench, scoring 12 points and taking in 12 rebounds. Aaron Brooks added 11 timely points. The Bulls out-rebounded Brooklyn 50-34 in the game.
They were impressive on a day when you can imagine that their bags were already packed for the trip to the Mid-west. They have so many looks and come at you in waves. They’ve played 17 games and figure to get much better as a team down the road.