The Bulls think they are prepared to kick it up a notch toward contention this year, however a couple of road losses to below.500 teams in the next 7 days did not help that mission.
A victory against the Celtics definitely would.
Chicago attempt to prevent a high for the year 3rd straight defeat Saturday evening when they carry on their classic rivalry with the visiting Celtics, who've won 4 consecutive & already have taken out the Bulls two times at the TD Garden.
following dropping an excellent 7 game 1st - round series to the Celtics ( 28 - 7 ) in the 2009 post-season & then falling in 5 contests to the Cavs the previous spring, Chicago ( 23 - 12 ) are wanting a longer playoffs run in 2011.
they will probably be a speedy out once again if they perform like they did at the Nets & the 76ers. the Bulls permitted New Jersey to throw up 49.4 % during a 96 - 94 defeat Wednesday, then saw Philadelphia make 56.3 %, the finest shooting effort versus Chicago this year, during a 105 - 99 loss Friday.
Those high percentages are a letdown going into a game versus the Celtics, which are shooting 50.5 % from the floor, putting it on pace to be the league's most efficient club since the 1994 - 1995 Jazz put in 51.2 %.
Chicago have already had 2 looks at Boston's proficiency. the Celtics shot 52.1 % from the court & put in 107.0 points in a couple of home court wins versus the Bulls earlier this year.
As Boston has been trying to figure out how to deal with Garnett being out, oddly they have been at the top of their game in the previous 2 contests. They put in 61.3 % during a 105 - 103 win against the Spurs on Wednesday, then threw in 57.5 % - which includes 11 of 21 from beyond the arc - during a 122 - 102 beating of the Raptors on Friday.
Totaling twenty-two during his 1st 16 NBA matchups, and getting seventeen points & eleven rebounds, first-year player Luke Harangody has been solid for a rookie.
Injuries to Garnett 997 right leg ) & Noah ( right thumb ) will reduce some of the hype from Saturday's game,
The fight between 2 of the NBA's top point guards, however, ought to once again be a strong one.
Rajon Rondo has gotten the finest of Rose during the 1st 2 games, putting in 11.0 points, 15.0 dishes & 3.5 steals within Boston's victories while Rose put in 5.0 turn-overs & 19.0 points, almost 5 beneath his year average.
Most importantly, Rondo has assisted Boston take advantage of Chicago's mistakes. Boston's put in 24.0 points resulting from turnovers versus Chicago.
A completely healthy Carlos Boozer may be capable to provide the Bulls an advantage. Boozer played just twenty-one minutes during the defeat at the Celtics the previous month, his 2nd game back following breaking his right hand.
he has put in 23.3 points during his previous thirteen contests, However Boston have usually given him issues. Boozer's 15.4 PPG versus Boston since 2005 - 2006 are his least versus any Eastern Conference competitor.
Chicago have picked up 10 of 11 on their home court while limiting their visitors to 40.0 % from the floor, however Ray Allen figures to threaten that. Allen has put in 25.0 points in his previous 14 visits to the United Center - post-season which includes - while shooting 47.4 % from beyond the arc.