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A story about the road trip so far:

PORTLAND, Ore. -- Kirk Hinrich looked like he aged 20 years late Wednesday night.

The same could be said for Bulls coach Scott Skiles, who took Wednesday night's 96-93 loss to the Trail Blazers harder than any of his players.


Self-doubt and frustration infiltrated the Bulls' locker room after the defeat, like it has so many times on the road in November.To be exact, the Bulls are 1-40 on this trip over the last six seasons.

This time there was no solace in making a spirited comeback after trailing by nine at the half and after three quarters.

"Defensively, we've been bad," Hinrich said. "We're trying to label ourselves a defensive team, and we're awful defensively."

The Bulls (3-4) hope to find some answers Friday night in Seattle against the SuperSonics (3-5).

When things were going the Bulls' way only a week ago at the United Center, and Hinrich was asked if the Bulls could keep up their furious pace for a whole season, he said probably not.

Bulls players, however, didn't think they could be stymied so soon.
There's a lot to be said for the Bulls' depth, but it's a damning statement when it becomes commonplace for the bench to carry the starters.

"If I change the lineup, it may still be true," Skiles said of the pattern.

Nonetheless, a change appears inevitable.

"We need guys to step in our starting lineup and be productive to start the game," Skiles said.
Maybe there will be a different starting line up on Friday night. More at
http://chicagosports.chicagotribune...7bulls,1,7822071.story?coll=cs-home-headlines
 

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Defense seems to be a problem early on. We score 95 yet we give up 98.1

Last year? 94.5 pts a game and we gave up, just 93.4.

Defense is a sore spot.

Scoring does not seem to be a problem, even with our leading scorer gone for the second straight year.

Our first 7 games last season? 0-7 averaged, 91 pts a game and allowed, 101. We got it together last season. Can we do it now?
 

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"We need guys to step in our starting lineup and be productive to start the game," Skiles said.

This seems like a ludicrous statement to me. Does he really expect Chandler-Songaila-Noicioni-Hinrich-Duhon to do that?

Not that I want to bring Curry up (because I don't believe we would be any better with him), but it seems that Curry's early scoring was essential for Skiles' strategy of average starters/strong bench. Without Curry, or any above average offensive player in the starting lineup besides Hinrich, this stratagem just doesn't work. I feel that Skiles should have realized this from beginning, but maybe this is me thinking in hindsight. Anyways, let's hope that a change comes soon.
 

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truebluefan said:
Defense seems to be a problem early on. We score 95 yet we give up 98.1

Last year? 94.5 pts a game and we gave up, just 93.4.

Defense is a sore spot.

Scoring does not seem to be a problem, even with our leading scorer gone for the second straight year.

Our first 7 games last season? 0-7 averaged, 91 pts a game and allowed, 101. We got it together last season. Can we do it now?
it's not necessarily our defense either... It's our Fouling rate... we are probably #1 in opposing FT attempts... our opponnets get probably like 10-15 more FTs than us and that's a HUGE hurdle to overcome since every game has been on the edge with the exception of GS

that's our #1 problem

#2 problem is our TOs... we make some of the stupidest turn overs and are STILL one of the top TO teams in the league

these are all FIXIBLE problems as opposed to trading players.... we really need to work hard on preventing fouls and stop stupid TOs... once we do that we can start dominating teams
 
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