7:00 p.m. CT on Comcast Sportsnet
Tonight will be a test. After coming off a win against Denver on Saturday, Russell Westbrook and the Thunder will be coming to town. The man is averaging a triple double: 31 points, 10 assists, and 10 rebounds and is the earlyish front-runner for MVP. The guy dominates on all sides of the ball.
However, as it was just announced, the man-on-fire on the Bulls, Jimmy Butler, will be a game-time decision because of a bad cold he has had. If he is gone, the Bulls will be missing someone who has averaged 38 points, 9 rebounds and 6 assists this past week. He is the reason the Bulls are on a three game winning streak. Without his MVP-level play, those wins would have surely been more difficult to come by. If he sits tonight, the Bulls will have to put in the extra effort to replace the team’s star.
Firstly, they have to stop Westbrook. Michael Carter-Williams, Jerian Grant, and Dwyane Wade will have to step up on defense to stop this machine who is transcending all levels of play.
Also, continued positive production from Doug McDermott is a must. He has been playing well the past two games, scoring 17 points in each, but he must continue this upward trend for the sake of the team’s and his own development.
The Bulls must also win the battle at the boards against Steven Adams who has proven to be one of the better centers in the game. Taj and Robin will have their work cut out for them, but if the Bulls want to win, especially if Jimmy Butler is resting, then these big men must continue to attack the boards and beat Adams
Whether or not this becomes the dream matchup of two MVP candidates we have been waiting for, this will surely be an enticing game.