It was a classic Celtics Bulls game in Boston Friday night. Still without Rose for at least another month or so, the Bulls somehow found a way like always winning a 100-99 stunner in OT. Rondo, who has dominated Robinson and Hinrich in every match up this year, did so again with 30 points and 7 assists before fouling out in OT. Carlos Boozer has been playing like everyone Chicago had expected him to play for the past 2 years, with 19 points and 20 boards, he is the only other player (DeMarcus Cousins) to be averaging a double-double since Christmas. Noah also had 14 and 13.
Unlikely hero(s): Marco Belinelli knocked down a fall back jumper with 3 seconds left in OT giving the Bulls a one point lead. Also Hinrich hit a game tying elbow jumper to tie the game up and force overtime. Jimmy Butler played impressively scoring 13 and grabbing 4 boards, playing significant minutes. He will have to get used to that with Deng’s lingering hamstring injury.
In reality, although it was one of the best games all year, it doesn’t nor should it mean anything to this Bulls team. Sitting now at 23 and 15 this team is over exceeding their expectations without Rose, but it could be better. Losing to the Bobcats, Suns and Hornets makes it feel like this team is hovering at .500. With about a month away, the Bulls have to hold the Fort just a little longer until they get their superstar back which will give them a bigger lift than any team will get through a trade at the deadline.
Closing Notes: Deng left with a tight hamstring during the game, this could be a huge blow for Thibs’ squad who relies on Deng for every facet of the game. Look for Butler to start tomorrow against Memphis as it is likely Deng will finally get a day of rest. Hopefully it will be nothing serious and Deng can return to the floor, but knowing our Bulls, it’s just going to be the next man up.