On Tuesday night, the Chicago Bulls lost by four to the Washington Wizards and continue to play down to their competition this season. A week ago, these Bulls were ending the Miami Heat‘s 27-game winning streak. Tonight, they lost to a team that is far and clear out of the playoff picture.
Shooting under 40 percent from the field including five for 23 from 3-point range, the Bulls showed that they are more than capable of offensive inconsistency as they have all season long.
Just two days prior, the Bulls were down nearly all game to the Detroit Pistons and ended up squeaking out a win by one. On that day, Chicago also managed to shoot under 40 percent from the field.
All season long, it seems that the Bulls play to the exact level of their competition. Yet, this same team has beaten the Heat, Indiana Pacers, and New York Knicks with a banged up roster minus their superstar Derrick Rose.
If you’re not confused by now, I’m not sure what else you need to know. Coach Tom Thibodeau has to be scratching his head after a month like this, let alone a regular season with this type of play. In order to succeed in the NBA Playoffs, the Bulls are going to need to play their best basketball of the year and learn not to play down to their opponents.
In the case of teams like the Heat, Pacers and Knicks, the Bulls can continue the trend if they would like. Playing up to their competition hasn’t been the problem.
For Chicago, their two healthy key players need to continue to play well and lead this team. Luol Deng and Carlos Boozer have been playing great basketball over the past week or two, and must keep it going because of so many injuries on the roster at the moment.
Forward Taj Gibson, guard Marco Belinelli, and guard Rip Hamilton are all beat up at the moment, and point guard Kirk Hinrich has dealt with several injuries all season long.
This hasn’t been the most ideal season for the Bulls, but they can still make something of it. Oddly enough, the way to accomplish that would be to continue this strange trend as the playoffs approach. As long as they keep playing up to their competition, I’m sure they would have no complaints with the results.