The 2016-2017 Bulls Experiment
The Chicago Bulls had a disappointing season last year and there’s a few reasons why that happened. Fred Hoiberg was brought in to coach after Tom Thibodeau left for Minnesota to coach the up & coming Timberwolves. Hoiberg coached at Iowa State & designed a fast paced offense that took some time for the Bulls to get used to since they were a defense-first team under Thibodeau. When a coach begins with a new team, they don’t always click right away until they get a feel for each other. Coach Hoiberg’s first year didn’t pan out the way we hoped so fans are chalking it up as a period of adjustment. Their second issue was Derrick Rose not returning to form the way everyone expected after having 2 separate knee surgeries in consecutive years. Injuries are very common in the NBA and can end a players season or even their career if it’s serious enough. Joakim Noah was sidelined with a shoulder injury for almost the entire 2015-2016 season and missed several games in past years due to various afflictions. Over the summer, the Bulls traded Derrick Rose & let Joakim Noah go with hopes of putting their major injury concerns behind them. Unfortunately the team now has 6 players who have gone through significant knee surgeries which could lead to missed games from key players later this season.
The Bulls made some moves during the offseason, they added Dwyane Wade, Rajon Rondo, Robin Lopez, Jerian Grant, drafted Denzel Valentine & recently traded Tony Snell to the Bucks for 2013-2014 rookie of the year Michael Carter-Williams. On the flip side, they lost Derrick Rose, Pau Gasol, Joakim Noah, Mike Dunleavy, E’Twaun Moore and Aaron Brooks. There’s been a lot of intrigue & curiosity about the newcomers, like how much Dwyane Wade has left in the tank for his age (34), can Rondo regain his form that won him a championship in Boston, and most importantly, can the new players coexist & not butt heads with each other? It’s hard to tell when Dwyane Wade, Rajon Rondo & Jimmy Butler all thrive when the ball is in their hands. An early concern during the preseason was lack of outside shooting & how the Bulls would space the floor. Through the first few games of the season, D-Wade has stepped up to become a threat from 3-point range & joins Doug McDermott & Nikola Mirotic among the team’s best. Through the first 3 games, the Bulls are 3-0 for the first time since the 1996-1997 season.
The concoction of new players to this year’s roster is interesting & has a lot of fans wondering if the experiment can work. Will the “3 alpha’s” (Jimmy Butler, Dwyane Wade & Rajon Rondo) play off each other effectively enough to make the playoffs? Only time will tell, but they have played extremely well to start the season & you can expect to see a lot of exciting match-ups against some tough teams. Grab your seats from Gold Coast by clicking here & catch all the action live!