The first of four bloodbaths. Expect a lot of defense, hard fouls and chatter from players. I know I’m looking forward to this one.
A lot of missed shots, a lot of blocks, and stingy perimeter and pick-and-roll defense. I hope to see Paul George matched up on Derrick Rose during the fourth quarter if the game is close.
Derrick Rose vs. Indiana’s interior defense
Not shocking to the least bit, but the Pacers have been terrifying again defensively this season, surrendering just 86 points per 100 possessions, which is tops in the league, per nba.com. We know what Derrick Rose loves to do, drive relentlessly to the paint, making circus shots over the tree trunks(the forecourt if you were wondering). Indiana doesn’t make it easy when you get into the lane either with Roy Hibbert and David West patrolling the inside, teams shoot 46 percent when they within five feet of the hoop. To put that in perspective, league average when shooting within five feet of the hoop is 58 percent. Scary!
Paul George’s Wrath
My three best players in the league so far have been Paul George, Chris Paul and LeBron James. George is averaging a modest 27 points, 4 assists, 8 rebounds as well as 52/45/80 shooting splits(FG/3PT/FT). To go along with that he’s grown as player, cutting down silly turnovers as a pick-and-roll ball handler into assists and creating and making shots off the dribble that he would’ve missed last year. The Bulls are no joke on defense. This will be his first ‘real’ test.