Watching Bulls games has made visibly and palpably angry lately. Angrier than I ever was in the early 00s Tim Floyd wasteland, angrier than the BG/Luol baby Bulls, even angrier than I ever was when VDN was failing to organize chaos.
The Tim Floyd era Bulls lost because they were supposed to lose. Their had all of 1 good player (Elton Brand) and tried to pass Rusty La fucking Rue off as a legitimate NBA point guard.
The Baby Bulls sometimes lost because BG would shoot them out of games, but they really didn't have many better options. Live by BG's fallaway threes, die by BG's fallaway threes.
And I'll say this for VDN. He may not have had any idea how to relate to players, diagram plays, or teach young players what they were supposed to be doing, but I always felt like the right players were on the court.
This Bulls team is more talented and deeper than any team in the East besides the Heat and Celtics (maybe you can make a case for the Magic.) They should not have trouble with the Nets and Bobcats of the world. But they frequently do because minutes are being eaten up by the Bulls 11th and 12th best players on the roster, who you can visibly see not playing as well as their counterparts.
Or am I crazy? Because why is no one else talking about this? Bogans, yes, everyone has been piling on TT about Bogans for the better part of the last few months. But I'm not here to talk about Bogans, he hasn't played more than 18 minutes since November.
But Kurt Thomas...What. The. Fuck. The only game since Taj's concussion Kurt hasn't played more than 20 minutes in was the Toronto game, where Taj put up 16 points and 14 rebounds. The next fucking night Taj only played 11 minutes to Kurt's 27, and I've already gone over how that cost us the game.
It happened again tonight. With about 6:45 left and the Bulls up 4, the Bobcats rotate the ball to Boris Diaw up top. Diaw drives to the hole, Kurt slides in front of him and barely offers any resistance at all as Diaw puts in the layup. The next possession for the Bobcats DJ Augustin drives baseline, Kurt Thomas comes over so late he practically sets a pick on CJ, who's forced to foul.
The problem is that in between those two plays Carlos Boozer blows a dunk, and that will look a lot better (or worse) on Sportscenter.
Later in the 4th Augustin drives, Kurt is late (as usual) and Augustin dishes to Tyrus for the layup. The Bulls were up 1 before that and never lead again. Kurt played 35 minutes of -4 ball, Taj played 18 minutes of +3. This is, and I hate using this word, but there's no other way to describe it: incredibly retarded. I can understand playing a young guy over a veteran to help him come along (although none of the last 3 Bulls coaches have understood that,) but I don't get why you would do the opposite. Taj is better than Kurt offensively. Taj is better than Kurt defensively. Taj is younger and a much bigger part of the Bulls plans going forward, even if it's as a trade chip. There is no single fucking logical explanation as to why Kurt should be getting double the minutes that Taj does, other than something to do with TT's fucking ego.
This makes at least 3 games I feel confident saying that if Kurt and Taj's minutes were flip-flopped, we would have won. And there's just no excuse for it. That's why I'm so mad right now. TT is not a stupid man, he's just stubborn, and that makes it 10 times worse. Blogabull, BytheHorns...help me out here. I can't be the only person outraged by this.
Help us, Joakim Noah. You're our only hope.
(I swear to God, though, if Kurt is still getting more minutes than Taj when Noah comes back...)