Posts Tagged ‘jamaal magloire

31
Oct
07

10/31/07 – Bulls vs. Nets preview

A quick preview of tonight’s action. 

6:30 Bulls’ time – Comcast Sports Net – Bulls vs. Nets

Joakim Noah is out for tonight’s game.  As far as we know at this point Ben Wallace is expected to play.  The Tribune is interestingly projecting Joe Smith to start at PF.  I would have guessed it would be Tyrus.  Everything else should go according to the default plan.  If Wallace doesn’t play I’m guessing Smith moves to C and Thomas starts at PF, but it could always be Noce too.

The New Jersey Nets aren’t, in my opinion, anything for the Bulls to worry about this season.  They haven’t played well against the Nets in the recent past, but the both teams are a year older this year and that’s a good thing for Chicago while it’s a bad thing for New Jersey.

The Nets have Nenad Kristic back this season which should make a huge difference.  He showed some great progress in his young career before missing last season with an injury.  They also added Jamaal Magloire who is a solid big man if not spectacular and should add much needed depth up front.  Mikki Moore is gone, but shouldn’t be missed too much.  He had a decent season statistically because he had a lot of playing time for a guy with his limited talents.  Overall, the Nets are a more complete team this season than they were last season but they’re also getting old.  Jason Kidd is 35 and his age is going to show up in his play sooner rather than later.  He looked good in the Tournament of the Americas this summer, but in the NBA he’ll be playing with far less talent around him and far more on the opposing teams.  Vince Carter, coming off of a great year statistically, also isn’t as young as he once was and, more importantly, isn’t in a contract year.  Vince has shown himself to be the Randy Moss of basketball, an amazingly talented player who only tries when it suits him. 

The Nets suffered a lot of injuries last season and very well could again this season.  If they don’t, they should have a decent record.  If they do, they’re done for.  I think the age of Kidd and Carter will become more and more evident as the season progresses.  However, they should be fresh enough on opening night.  I think this game will be close for a long time and then one team will pull away.  New Jersey is a -2.5 favorite.  I’m not sure who will win, but I think it will be by more than three points.  Since it’s the first game of the season and I don’t have much to work with, let’s say Chicago wins and covers the spread.

I plan to do a mini diary during the game and post it afterwards, so look out for that later tonight.  Go Bulls!

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17
Jul
07

Another quiet leader

There’s not much to say about the Joe Smith signing.  Given the players the Bulls were looking at Smith was far and away the best option.  Chris Mihm didn’t play all of last year and was never all that impressive.  Mikki Moore’s decent season last year probably won’t be repeated.  He’ll be 32 when the season starts so you know he’s not going to get better than he is now. 

         
Joe Smith should follow in Antonio and PJ’s footsteps.  All he has to do
now is become a part of the NBA Player’s Association leadership. Davis
has been the Executive Committee President in recent years and Brown
has been a Vice President.

Smith, who will also be 32 when the season starts, has had a much more consistent career than Moore.  Smith has also performed at higher levels in his career than Mihm ever did while healthy.  All the reports say he’ll bring a steady veteran leadership to a locker room filled with youth.  He won’t bring much back-to-the-basket scoring, but who will?  Smith should fill the role that P.J. Brown filled last season and that Antonio Davis did prior to P.J.  Hit jumpers from the elbow, rebound and defend decently, provide quiet yet strong team leadership, maybe take Noah under his wing (because Big Ben isn’t really the mentoring type).

$10 million is kind of a lot for a player of Smith’s current quality, however because it’s only a two year contract it won’t cripple the team’s financial flexibility in any significant way.  Paxson, as we’ve come to expect, made another smart yet conservative move picking up Joe Smith. 

One thing we’d like to know is why the Bulls never even looked at Jamaal Magloire?  He’s a couple of years younger and brings more or less the same qualities to the table that Smith does.  In the end Smith still may have been the smarter pick, but Magloire definitely deserved a look over Mihm and Moore. 




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