The Chicago Bulls did not have to do too much this offseason, and they have been very quiet. One of the things they are hoping to accomplish is good health for backup combo guard, Kirk Hinrich.
Hinrich came back to the Bulls last season to play a key role for them. He was brought back to hold down the starting point guard position until Derrick Rose came back from injury. Well, it did not go down like that. Rose never came back from ACL surgery, and Hinrich had to play major minutes. All the minutes Hinrich logged into play, led to his body breaking down. He missed 22 regular season games and the final eight games of the playoffs, due to various ailments and injuries. So, Hinrich is hoping for a good string of health.
In the games Hinrich did play in, he played quite well. He was the veteran leader that Bulls fans are accustomed to. He averaged 7.7 points and 5.2 assists per game last season. Those averages went up in the playoffs, 11.3 points and 5.8 assists per game. Hinrich was the captain on defense as well, adapting to coach Tom Thibodeau‘s defensive schemes. The Bulls were 9-21 without Hinrich in the line-up, and 41-23 with him in the line-up, including playoffs. Simply put, the Bulls needed Hinrich on the floor.
The outlook for next season will considerably change for Hinrich. Rose should be 100 percent healthy, and Hinrich will be his backup. With Hinrich as the primary backup, he will be able to play fewer minutes and concentrate on leading the bench. That is a role that Hinrich will thrive in, and be the defensive specialist Bulls fans want. This will keep him fresh, healthy and prolong his career.