L.O.N. — D is for Derrick
But also, D is for Defense.
by Shannon Booher
Line Of The Night:
Derrick Rose — 33 points, 9 assists, 2 boards
DRose gets the stats, his teammates get his back. Rose was the steady rock on offense that he always is, but the key to closing this one out was the defense supplied by the bench in the fourth quarter. The Bulls, anchored by Taj Gibson, Ronnie Brewer and Omer Asik, took the Hawks completely out of their offense in the fourth, forcing tough shot after tough shot. Only Jeff Teague could manage much, and he was probably fifth on the Bulls’ emphasis list. The defense is our backbone.
Worst Of The Night:
J-Creezy — 2 points on 1-9 shooting
Ouch. Following Game 1, the Bulls have absolutely shut Crawford down in this series. Locked. Down. For the Hawks to have any chance to do the improbable, they are going to need some offense from our guy. C’mon, Creezy!
Executive(s) Of The Year Of The Night:
Miami Heat president Pat Riley and Chicago Bulls general manager Gar Forman have been named co-recipients of the NBA Executive Of The Year award. Cop out. Pick one or the other, or better yet, don’t pick either. Riley was gift-wrapped LeBron and Bosh, as they seemed to decide amongst themselves where the wanted to play, and then Riley didn’t really do an outstanding job with the supporting cast. Forman’s Bulls also won a little bit in spite of their roster, with the major improvement coming from within. He does get some credit for the Thibodeau hire, though. Our winner? Whoever is running things down in Dallas (Donnie Nelson, we think). Tyson Chandler, Peja Stojakovic, Corey Brewer… the list goes on.
Tattoo Of The Night:
This is what happens when NBA players are sent fishing early. Let the “Andrei Kirilenko to Denver” rumors begin. The real question, though: Does the dragon rider get a once-a-year free pass from Kirilenko’s wife, too?
Uniforms Of The Night:
The Washington Wizards unveiled their revamped uniforms for the ‘11-12 season. Yes! Back to the red, white and blue. It’s a beautiful thing. Thank you, Ted Leonsis (Washington’s owner). Now get on your grind with the name change. Complete the cipher and give us a Washington Bullets renaissance.
Best Apology Of The Night:
Andrew Bynum: “My actions … don’t represent me, my upbringing, this franchise or any of the Laker fans out there that want to watch us and want us to succeed. Furthermore, and more importantly, I want to actually apologize to JJ Barea for doing that. I’m just glad that he wasn’t seriously injured in the event and all I can say is, I’ve looked at [the replay], it’s terrible and it definitely won’t be happening again.”
Sounds like Bynum really knows he screwed up and feels bad about it. Good job. He will still have to sit out the first five games of next season, though, after being suspended by the League for his actions.
Worst Apology Of The Night:
LeBron James: “I want to apologize for using the ‘R’ word after Game 3. If I offended anyone, I sincerely apologize.”
Oh, LeBron. You used the dreaded “if I offended anyone.” That’s not good enough. When you say that, you are saying: “I don’t even know why I’m apologizing, but I’ll throw one out there anyway.” Better not to apologize at all, than give us that garbage.
Surely his Bulls teammates were thrilled with Carlos Boozer’s Game 5 victory guarantee, considering he spent much of the fourth quarter on the bench… Some of the things Josh Smith can do on the court — so sick. We love him leading the break… Marv Albert and Steve Kerr were on a roll last night. Comedy… Larry Bird to return as Indiana Pacers team president… Pau Gasol ends speculation, says he and his girlfriend are fine, he and Kobe are fine, and the that rumors themselves caused the emotional problems he was having…