Tonight: The Brooklyn Nets (34-25) head to Chicago tonight to take on the Bulls (33-25) at 8 p.m. EST. The Nets are fresh off a concerning loss at home to the Mavericks while the Bulls are recent victors over the 76ers. In the battle for Eastern Conference mediocrity, the Nets and Bulls sit one game apart, with the Nets holding the 5th spot while the Bulls fall comfortably in 6th.
Watch and Listen: Tonight’s game will be broadcasted on YES Network and also simulcasted on WFAN and in spanish on WADO.
Out: Nets – Jerry Stackhouse. Bulls – Derrick Rose, Rip Hamilton, Taj Gibson.
Projected Starters: Chicago Bulls: Luol Deng, Carlos Boozer, Joakim Noah, Marco Belinelli, Kirk Hinrich. Brooklyn Nets: Gerald Wallace, Reggie Evans, Brook Lopez, Joe Johnson, Deron Williams.
What to Watch For:
Toughness: As in does this Nets team have it? After last night’s disheartening loss there is no question their mettle and collective resolve will be tested against a gritty Bulls team. The Bulls’ defense will unearth any offensive issues you may have and after last night’s 19 turnover performance the onus is on P.J. and the gang to figure things out, quickly.
Rotations: Still a question mark for P.J. Carlesimo that needs to get answered as the Nets struggle to find consistency in cohesion. The front court seems to be the most fluid, but a backcourt with gimpy feet has now raised questions on that part of the court. Who will be closing this game out tonight? No really, who? Do you know?
Joakim Noah: The Bulls center is coming off is finest game as a professional, wreaking triple double havoc (23 points, 21 rebounds, 11 blocks) on the Sixers in their last game. The long-limbed, frenetic menace is exactly the kind of player that could give Brook Lopez and the rest of the Nets front court fits.