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http://www.dailyherald.com/sports/bulls.asp?intID=3799940

With Friday's loss, the Bulls finished a 12-game stretch that included just three opponents with a winning record.

The results (4-8) aren't encouraging.

After Saturday's win over New Orleans, Jamal Crawford predicted the Bulls will make the playoffs.

True, the Bulls probably would vault into playoff contention by winning eight of 10. The only problem is, they haven't won three in a row this season and haven't won four in a row since Michael Jordan played for them.

"That means we're due for it," Crawford said. "We started off, our first three losses of the season were by 30 points. We're so far away from that. So we don't see why we can't win a few in a row."


"Our close losses have to turn into wins," added Eddy Curry.


The schedule is about to take a difficult turn. Tonight, the Bulls host Detroit, which has won eight in a row and hasn't lost at the United Center since Jan. 22, 2000. After that, the Bulls play 10 of their next 13 away from home.

...... Skiles responds with "So what?"

"My mind doesn't work like that," he said. "I don't have a thought process where I say, 'Show me some proof that something can work.' I believe it can work and I continue to work until that end result is reached.

"It would be very easy for me to say, 'Well, we've lost to the crummy teams, therefore we can't make it.' But I don't even think like that. If you're always thinking about failure, it's self-fulfilling - you're going to fail."
 

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These guys (and I'm referring to Jamal and Eddy) have their eyes so keyed in on playoffs that they forget to focus in on one game, one play at a time.

Me glad that their confidence is resilient in terms of shrugging off what happens game after game, but in-game, they seem to be as unconfident as any other team. And one sign of this lack of confidence in game is that they'll play not to screw up. They'll stick with what is comfortable. Jamal in particular will stick to his shot no matter what as evidenced last game and Eddy will just be his timid self until its too late or Skiles gives him another insult to fabricate madness out of.

At any rate, it seems like we'll have to skip a lot of steps in development to get from 6th worst team in the league to playoff seed. That means we'll actually have to win more than 2 games in a row.

What do I make of all this ?

I think this team has been told too many times that they're unique or at least going to be. And in-game they might rely on the thinking that "it's just one game, I had a bad night." What's even more interesting is that these guys opening their mouths are guys who have always skipped a step in doing things (high school to the NBA). They always keep the hope that they'll do something.
 

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Originally posted by <b>E L D R U H M A I</b>!
These guys (and I'm referring to Jamal and Eddy) have their eyes so keyed in on playoffs that they forget to focus in on one game, one play at a time.

Me glad that their confidence is resilient in terms of shrugging off what happens game after game, but in-game, they seem to be as unconfident as any other team. And one sign of this lack of confidence in game is that they'll play not to screw up. They'll stick with what is comfortable. Jamal in particular will stick to his shot no matter what as evidenced last game and Eddy will just be his timid self until its too late or Skiles gives him another insult to fabricate madness out of.

At any rate, it seems like we'll have to skip a lot of steps in development to get from 6th worst team in the league to playoff seed. That means we'll actually have to win more than 2 games in a row.

What do I make of all this ?

I think this team has been told too many times that they're unique or at least going to be. And in-game they might rely on the thinking that "it's just one game, I had a bad night." What's even more interesting is that these guys opening their mouths are guys who have always skipped a step in doing things (high school to the NBA). They always keep the hope that they'll do something.
I think it is good that they are confident but you are right, they do need to focus on individual games and individual plays. We certainly shouldn't be dropping games like we did against Portland. I am encouraged that they are still hoping to make the playoffs but they really need to step it up a notch if they are going to do that. IMO, that "blink of an eye" change is gonna be when we get a healthy Tyson back. He can be a huge difference maker and Pip can too really. But the Bulls have to try to keep things tight until those guys come back. Pip will likely come back tonight but it should be a few games before he is back into game shape. Tyson, it seems like I have been hearing will be back in 2 weeks for about a month now. So hopefully we will get him back soon.

Pesonally I think it takes someone who wants to be a leader to look at this teams record and say "we will make the playoffs." But it takes an ACTUAL leader to get them into the playoffs. Whether Crawford can be that leader has yet to be determined. I am pretty pleased with his progress in that area, although it seems like I am the only one most of the time.

In any case, I am not counting the Bulls out of the playoff picture until they are statistically eliminated. The east is very weak and inconsistent and I have a feeling the Bulls can make a little run with Pip & TC back and in the east that might be all it takes.
 

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Originally posted by <b>ace20004u</b>!

Pesonally I think it takes someone who wants to be a leader to look at this teams record and say "we will make the playoffs." But it takes an ACTUAL leader to get them into the playoffs. Whether Crawford can be that leader has yet to be determined. I am pretty pleased with his progress in that area, although it seems like I am the only one most of the time.
I think Jamal's making progress as well, just that he doesn't appear to be as much of a gradual or fast learner as he is a punctuated learner. A punctuated learner in the school of E L D R U H M A I A is someone who learns and applies things in spurts. Part of the reason Jamal's a punctuated learner is because he sticks to his comfort zone quite a bit. He won't do something right away because it's not comfortable. But the payoff is that once he learns something and by that, I mean attach that something he's learned to his comfort zone, he's electric.
 

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Originally posted by <b>E L D R U H M A I</b>!


I think Jamal's making progress as well, just that he doesn't appear to be as much of a gradual or fast learner as he is a punctuated learner. A punctuated learner in the school of E L D R U H M A I A is someone who learns and applies things in spurts. Part of the reason Jamal's a punctuated learner is because he sticks to his comfort zone quite a bit. He won't do something right away because it's not comfortable. But the payoff is that once he learns something and by that, I mean attach that something he's learned to his comfort zone, he's electric.
Part of this may be his late start in organized basketball. I'm not sure but you may have a point.
 

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The optimist in me wants to think this team can still make the playoffs because the east is soooo weak. The realist in me thinks that chance has passed.

Currently we're 5 1/2 behind philly for the 8th seed. We're two games behind the knicks and three behind the Heat. I'd just like to see this team pass those two for the 9th seed and then we can talk about playoffs. This is the time for that to happen. The Heat are on a little road trip and are playing the Kings tonight. I can't see the Heat winning that one. The Knicks lost last night and so a Bulls win tonight would put us two games down on the heat and a game and a half down on the knicks. It's just we gotta beat the Pistons to do it. No simple task. These are the games you gotta win in order to get back into a playoff race.

I look at the teams directly in front of us in the standings and they're all currently playing .500 ball or better. Over the last 10 games we're playing .500 ball. That ain't gonna cut it. We've got another long west coast trip comming up at the end of Jan and beginning of Feb. I just don't see this team playing well enough ball as compared to the rest of the east to make up that kind of ground. They're gonna have to finish at like a 20-10 clip over the last 30 games of the season to even have a shot at the playoffs. They haven't won at a .667 clip yet this year for an extended number of games, I don't see how they'll do it now.

We really lost ground out of the gate this year and also in the teams' inability to close out 4th quarters as of late. We're better, but not there and I'm afraid this is going to turn out to be a little too little a little to late. I hope I'm wrong!
 

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Originally posted by <b>fl_flash</b>!
The optimist in me wants to think this team can still make the playoffs because the east is soooo weak. The realist in me thinks that chance has passed.

Currently we're 5 1/2 behind philly for the 8th seed. We're two games behind the knicks and three behind the Heat. I'd just like to see this team pass those two for the 9th seed and then we can talk about playoffs. This is the time for that to happen. The Heat are on a little road trip and are playing the Kings tonight. I can't see the Heat winning that one. The Knicks lost last night and so a Bulls win tonight would put us two games down on the heat and a game and a half down on the knicks. It's just we gotta beat the Pistons to do it. No simple task. These are the games you gotta win in order to get back into a playoff race.

I look at the teams directly in front of us in the standings and they're all currently playing .500 ball or better. Over the last 10 games we're playing .500 ball. That ain't gonna cut it. We've got another long west coast trip comming up at the end of Jan and beginning of Feb. I just don't see this team playing well enough ball as compared to the rest of the east to make up that kind of ground. They're gonna have to finish at like a 20-10 clip over the last 30 games of the season to even have a shot at the playoffs. They haven't won at a .667 clip yet this year for an extended number of games, I don't see how they'll do it now.

We really lost ground out of the gate this year and also in the teams' inability to close out 4th quarters as of late. We're better, but not there and I'm afraid this is going to turn out to be a little too little a little to late. I hope I'm wrong!
Yeah but we do have Chandler and Pip coming back and that should help a great deal too. I try to remain optimistic about the playoffs, they probably aren't likely but it ain't over till the fat lady sings.
 

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I suppose it's nice that JC and EC think we can make the playoffs. Pretty much just words though.

Agree with the other posters - you can only win 'em one at a time. Beat the Pistons tonight. Then we'll talk about the Griz, etc.
 

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Originally posted by <b>transplant</b>!
I suppose it's nice that JC and EC think we can make the playoffs. Pretty much just words though.

Agree with the other posters - you can only win 'em one at a time. Beat the Pistons tonight. Then we'll talk about the Griz, etc.
Given that we are tied with Phoenix at the fifth worst record in the league, I'd say we need to focus one game at a time. That said, I think in two weeks we will be ahead of Phoenix (in sole posession of the sixth worst record). After that, four teams (Miami, New York, Golden State, and LAClipp) have only 15 wins. Also, Utah should start to drop like a rock, given the loss of Harpring.

If we remain focused, I could see in a month where we could be the 12th worst team in the league........ 9th best in the East. Wouldn't it be sweet to battle Toronto for the last play-off spot the rest of the season?

As for the quotes....... I think it shows that neither Curry nor Jamal have quit on Skiles, the team, or themselves. It'll be nice to see this team with Tyson, Scottie, and "Flop" Dupree on hand.
 
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