Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Bulls Open Preseason Against Grizzlies Tonight; Mirotic Impresses in NBA Debut

The Chicago Bulls open their preseason tonight against the Memphis Grizzlies. This game will mark the return of longtime Bulls fan favorite, Kirk Hinrich along with what the media is already dubbing "Bench Mob 2.0". It also marks the beginning of what will likely be a long season without Bullsformer MVP and star player, Derrick Rose. Here's a look at the probable starters for tonight's game:

PG: Kirk Hinrich
SG: Richard Hamilton
SF: Luol Deng
PF: Carlos Boozer
C: Joakim Noah

PG: Mike Conley
SG: Tony Allen
SF: Rudy Gay
PF: Zach Randolph
C: Marc Gasol

Note: Joakim Noah has been MIA the last few days days of training camp due to the death of his grandmother. He'll most likely be a game time decision, but I have a feeling he'll still start.

It'll be interesting to see how well players such as Nate Robinson, Marco Bellinelli and Vladimir Radmonovic play under Tom Thibodeau's defensive schemes. Kyle Korver wasn't much of a defender until playing under Thibodeau. I'd like to think he's a much more servicable player after his two years with the Bulls. It'll also be interesting to see how well Bulls rookie, Marquis Teague plays after his terrible showing during the NBA Summer League.

The Grizzlies won their first preseason game against Real Madrid last Saturday night. Rudy Gay put up a dominating 27 points. Mike Conley looked excellent as well with 18 points and 8 assists. To most NBA fans, this game was just a preseason scrimmage against some lame international competition. However, this game was also the first look at future Bulls draftee Nikola Mirotic. The future 21 year old prospect put up 14 points and grabbed 7 boards. Mirotic was good enough for Zach Randolph to acknowledge his game and earned him some praise from the 11 year vet.

“I like him,” Randolph said. “I told Marc (Gasol) he can shoot the ball. I was asking how old he was. He’s just 21. The kid’s got a real upside. He can play in the NBA.”

Mirotic followed up his performance last night with a 17 point, 12 rebound game in another losing effort, this time against the Toronto Raptors. Former Bull John Lucas III lit up Real Madrid scoring 16 points off the bench going 7-10 from the field. The Bulls are expected to bring over Mirotic at the beginning of the 2014-15 season.

The Bulls preseason debut against the Memphis Grizzlies will be nationally televised on NBA-TV tonight at 8:00 p.m.


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