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Sam Smith Archive

Nov 9

Remember when the Bulls looked like potential NBA champions, scoring impressively, shooting the ball as well as they have in years, a deep bench coming in to grab the baton from the starters and race ahead to finish off teams, a conference best record with the only loss in overtime?

Oh, right. That was Friday.

And then came Saturday when …

Nov 8

The question often comes up, in a hopeful demand from fans, about whether this 2014-15 version is the best Bulls team since the champions of the 1990s.

That’s to be determined, but thus far it’s the most offensive.

Though not in an unpleasant way.

The Bulls Friday piled up another 118 points, which was just enough to hold on for …

Nov 6

There’s been this narrative about Pau Gasol, a sort of don’t confuse me with the facts thing that he is a tentative player, someone who fades from the fight, soft in the detractive vernacular of professional sports. This, of course, for the second leading man on a two-time champion team. You know: Are you going to believe what you see …

Nov 5

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said to relax.

Yes, this is how bad the latest Derrick Rose injury stuff is getting that four games into the season and after missing two games with a sprained ankle—a very routine NBA injury that often leaves players out a week—Thibodeau is telling people they are too uptight.

Now, aren’t your embarrassed that Thibodeau says …

Nov 5

Jimmy Butler was starting to get noticed last season, being named all-defensive second team and averaging 13.3 per game in the playoffs, 14.5 per game in the 20 games he started. But there was room for improvement, far still to go. So Butler went back home to Texas after the season and went to school.

He’s come back to the …

Nov 2

There was little mystery to the Bulls slump busting 106-105 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves Saturday.

That’s right, the Butler did it.

He jimmied the door to a Bulls victory that seemed closed seconds before on a Kevin Martin three following three consecutive Timberwolves offensive rebounds on the same possession.

I sure am going to wear that one out.

And …

Nov 1

The Bulls and Cleveland Cavaliers Friday put on a terrific show for a national TV audience and a raucous United Center. The two Eastern Conference favorites turned what would usually be a routine cold October day into the heat of NBA May in a 114-108 Cavaliers overtime victory.

“It would have been better if we had won,” Joakim Noah offered …

Oct 31

The Bulls Friday were hearing about pay quite a bit.

There was the potential payback to LeBron James, now with the Cavs, after trying to defeat the Miami Heat the last four seasons.

And there was the issue of pay to Jimmy Butler, who was negotiating for a contract extension as the minutes ticked away to the Oct. 31 deadline. …

Oct 30

These games, like the Bulls’ opening night 104-80 drubbing of the Knicks, are shaped in the kiln of internal competition, the heat of their practice battles hardening these Bulls players to the kind of strength that proved much too rugged for a hopeful and developing Knicks team with Carmelo Anthony.

“Our second unit is really talented,” said top reserve Taj …

Oct 29

Is this Chicago heresy? Michael Jordan not being the baseline for all knowledge and inspiration? But Larry Bird?

“One player I look at, older player, someone like Larry Bird, he just had a great feel for the game,” Derrick Rose was saying Wednesday morning after the Bulls practice about circumstances of the game. “His teammates loved playing with him and …

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