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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Bulls-123, Suns-115 (Bulls and Bears)


Considering the circumstances, that was an incredible win for the Bulls. Down 23 at one point in the first quarter the Bulls stormed back to win in 2 overtimes, overcoming not only the deficit and fatigue from playing the Lakers the night before, but also the injury to Taj Gibson. What went more right than wrong to send the Bulls to a 3-2 record with 2 games left on the circus trip?:

Bull Market!

- The Defense. After that awful showing in the first quarter the defense tightened up and executed the gameplan that they seemed to forget for 12 minutes. They slowed the game down and contested every shot, causing the Suns to frequently heave shots as time expired.

- Derrick Rose. Derrick has that rare personality that causes him to get better in the 4th quarter and beyond. He ended up with 35 points, 12 rebounds, and 7 assists, and hit several key shots to keep the Bulls in the game, including the tying free throws in the fourth quarter, and the tying layup in the first overtime.

- Joakim Noah. This is the reason trading him and Deng for Melo isn't a good idea. Noah does everything; assists, rebounds, points, and he seems to clean up at least three Rose misses a game with tip-ins. Beautiful steal on Steve Nash tonight, too.

-James Johnson. He'll probably fade like he did last time he had a big game, but Thibodeau can't keep him out of the rotation after he dominated so often in this game.

Bear Market.

-The Bad Quarter. It's plagued this team all season. Normally the second or third quarter,
but tonight the first, the Bulls have at least one bad breakdown for 12 minutes a game. It's
something that needs to be fixed before the Bulls can cement themselves as the best in the East
with the Celtics and Magic.

-Offensive Pacing. The Bulls tried to run with the Suns the entire first quarter, and we saw
what happened there. The Bulls are great when they play half-court basketball, too often did
they take quick jump shots in this game and it put them in a hole early.

-Rebounding. Boy did the Bulls miss Taj. The stats are skewed in the Bulls favor because of
the two OT periods and the end of the 4th, but for three periods the Bulls got rocked on the
boards. Noah can't do it all, kids.

Next up is Denver on Friday in a very winnable game. Thank God the Bulls have one day to rest,
they'll need it after this one.

Around the NFL, Week 11

Steelers 35, Raiders 3
Oh thank God. The Raiders fans have been mildly humbled but not enough that they've been severed from the mistaken premise that they have a good football team. Guh.

Jaguars 24, Browns 20
Fuck you, Jacksonville.

Redskins 19, Titans 16
My long-standing hatred of Vince Young appears justified by the fact that he's a petulant, entitled dickhead who won't take another snap in a Titan's uniform.

Jets 30, Texans 27
The Texans' defense is a disgrace to football and America.

Ravens 37, Panthers 13

Packers 31, Vikings 3
The game that lowered the Childress-axe for once and for all. I, for one, wish he'd have kept that job forever.

Chiefs 31, Cardinals 13
The Cardinals were better in the days of young Jake Plummer. He could pull off 3-7 in Style.

Cowboys 35, Lions 19
Yeah, this little two game streak of competence will end now that New Orleans is rolling into town for Thanksgiving.

Bills 49, Bengals 31
Oh my God the Bengals are terrible.

Saints 34, Seahawks 19
The Seahawks will probably make the playoffs at 8-8 despite losing to Denver, St. Louis, New York, Oakland, and New Orleans by an average of 23 points. The entire NFC West has been outscored on the season by their opponents. Not a single one of them deserves a winning record. But one of them will make the playoffs and someone out of Chicago, Green Bay, New Orleans, Tampa Bay, the Giants, or the Eagles will not. There's no justice in this world.

Bucs 21, 49ers 0
That said, I hope Tampa doesn't make it either.

Falcons 34, Rams 17
Atlanta gets better every week.

Patriots 31, Colts 28
I know he's Peyton Manning and he's a record-setter and a SB champion QB (against Rex Grossman) but I can't help but get frustrated when he throws 3 interceptions, costs his team the win, mopes, pouts, screams at his linemen, and the media praises his fire and passion. Meanwhile, Earl Bennett just sneezed and tv replays clearly show that Jay Cutler did Not say God Bless You, and Tony Dungy just broke down his poor manners on Football Night in America.

Eagles 27, Giants 17
The Giants actually did a good job of containing Vick, and Eli Manning kindly threw the game away. Hopefully the Bears can do a better job of eliminating mistakes.

Chargers 35, Broncos 14
Suck it, McDaniels.

That's all for this week, folks. No Prognostication Bukakke this week as it's a holiday and my 21 game lead over Iggins! more or less dictates that he's a ball of yarn which I may drag out of the cupboard whenever I wish to bat him around before shelving him indefinitely. See ya Monday.
Go Bears.