11:37 AM CDT, October 31, 2012
I know there’s a point to this Bulls season that starts without Derrick Rose.
I’m just not sure what it is.
Nobody on the Bulls can be Rose, and nobody should try. The Bulls can’t win a title without Rose, nor can they do it with him if they can’t acquire two more superstars.
But they’re going to play, starting Wednesday night against Sacramento, and we’re going to watch.
But watch for what exactly?
For Carlos Boozer to score and rebound in hopes that someone will trade for him before he gets amnestied next summer?
To project Taj Gibson’s progress in terms of a championship unit?
To hope veteran guard Kirk Hinrich doesn’t take over for veteran guard Richard Hamilton in carrying on the tradition of frequent injuries to veteran guards?
To see whether Joakim Noah can return to averaging a double-double?
To see whether Luol Deng can return to averaging 60 minutes?
To determine whether they have a new “Bench Mob’’ or just a bench mess?
To confirm that Nate Robinson fits neatly into the overhead compartment?
To see if they’re worth the $300 that a courtside seat was going for on StubHub on Tuesday?
Or if they’re even worth the $17 that the worst seat was going for?
Here’s what I see: The Tom Thibodeau Bulls will play hard. They’ll play ferocious defense, except for Boozer, who will scream, but scoring will be an issue. They’ll win 41 or 42 games and make the playoffs. They’ll hope Rose comes back before April.
That last one seems to be the real point of this season. So, I guess after an offseason of questions about Rose’s return, the Bulls finally get regular-season questions about Rose’s return.
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