Observations on the Bulls with 4 pre season games remaining.


Oct 14

Vinny Del Negro pregame:

I am sitting in my Minnesota hotel room on a dreary October afternoon awaiting tonight’s pre season game between the Bulls and T-Wolves. For some, it may seem like a meaningless game as the league prepares for the season opener October 28. But for me, pre season games are not an after thought. There is always something to gain from playing a game.

For example, the two rookies: James Johnson and Taj Gibson need as much floor time as they can possibly receive. The more they learn about the game the better. Tuesday night the Bucks ran isolation matchups with Harkim Warrick posting up Gibson. Taj drew three fouls in the first seven minutes but to his credit battled through the early struggles and asserted himself extremely well in the second half. Let me be perfectly clear about Gibson. Perhaps not at this point but somewhere down the line he is a starter in the NBA. I like his defensive abilities and his basketball IQ. Johnson has a ton of talent. I don’t think he even knows how good of a player he can become . I’m serious. He is equipped with skills that simply can’t be taught or coached. But he needs to let the game come to him. As the legendary John Wooden says, “Be quick, but don’t hurry.”

Wooden incidentally turns 99 today. What a great man and a Hall of Fame coach. His wisdom and teaching skills will never be challenged. Never. When Kareem Abdul Jabbar and Bill Walton endorse Wooden that says it all. It’s hard to believe it will be 35 years in March that Wooden and UCLA coached his last game, an NCAA title game victory over Kentucky at the San Diego Sports Arena.

The Bulls early season schedule is a monster. If the team can hold its own and not get down I think they’ve got a chance to do some special things this year. I love what John Paxson and Gar Forman are doing and Vinny Del Negro is growing as a head coach. But remember, it’s pre season and it’s mid October. Let;’s keep things in perspective as we navigate our way through a grueling 82 game slate. I do like the chemistry and I do like these players are people . The Bulls are blessed with quality people.

Got to run but follow me on Twitter at @swirsk054. You can always e-mail me at

Plenty of tweets in-game tonight and post game on

Always a pleasure.

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