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Rollin Wit Da Homies
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was going to make this into an editorial, but I'll save my next one for right before preseason games start. I'm too lazy to put the effort into being a stylish writer right now... plus I haven't really been productive at work for the last three days or so.

Here are the attitudes I've gleaned from the boards regarding summer league.

Attitude 1: Summer leagues mean junk. It's just a chance for the Bulls to fool around with the lineups.

Attitude 2: We've got 5 guys that will be in our regular season rotation going up against end of benchers who might not make the rosters. We ought to have possessed a significant advantage over opposing teams.


Thus, according to attitude 1, we can say:

2-4 record? So what. The games are completely not an indication of what the Bulls will be like in the regular season.

According to attitude 2, we can say:

The Bulls are in over their heads. If these are the players that are going to be getting the majority of minutes in the season, then we have some serious problems.


What is the real deal here? Which side is right?

The answer is, both are right in their own ways. The summer leagues games are NOT meaningless, just as any practice or scrimmage is not meaningless. Summer league games have MORE significance than those, because they are much more game-like circumstances against other players in the league. But nevertheless, summer league games are useful for at least one thing: seeing what individual skills the players have. Can Jay burn guys on a crossover? Does Mason bring a tough defensive attitude? Is Crawford bold in going to the hoop? Did Chandler develop a game time jumper? Does Baxter show that he can hold his own?

Questions about team chemistry and so forth aren't quite as relevant. Can Jay or JC run the triangle effectively? That's not a good question; it depends too much on everyone else on the floor, and some of those guys on the floor aren't even going to be on the team...

The wins and losses don't necessarily mean anything, either. Yes, Curry, Chandler, Crawford, Williams, and Hassell will all be getting significant starting or starter-level minutes. They are important to the team.

But the two most important pieces of the puzzle are missing, and they DO drastically change these players' games. We have to look only as far back as last season to see what these pieces are...

1. Bill Cartwright. BC's coaching spurred the Bulls on to several wins from the start, and the respect that is attached to him along with his basketball experience proved extremely valuable to the team. His defense-first policy didn't transform each player into defensive lock-downs, but the attitude will elevate the team defense.

2. Jalen Rose. Rose immediately impacted the Bulls offensive scheme but also gave hope for a team by being a real veteran. His playoff experience and his ability to lead by example makes him the true GLUE for this team.

There's also a spark of hope left yet in our X-factor, Eddie Robinson. And there's also a very serviceable continually improving PF in Fizer, who will dutifully contribute until he is traded.

As much as Curry, Chandler and Jay are going to be developing into the rock-solid leaders of our team, the fact is, this team is about Rose and BC right now.

So we saw some interesting things in the summer leagues, including the nice addition that Mason and Baxter will both probably make the team. That's the real highlight, IMO.
 
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