Just how good are the Chicago Bulls? After two straight playoff appearances, the Bulls look to take the next step after a couple of key additions in the offseason. To do so, however, they have to prove that they are the best, or even second-best, team in their own division.
The biggest addition for the Chicago Bulls was defensive stalwart Ben Wallace. Wallace is a four-time defensive player of the year who will bring toughness and a team-mentality to the Bulls. He is also a veteran presence on a fairly young team. The main problem with Ben, however, is that he is no offensive threat, which is the main area the Bulls lacked in last season.
The main scorers for the Chicago Bulls are the young backcourt players in Kirk Hinrich and Ben Gordon. Hinrich is an excellent point guard who can shoot from any spot on the floor. The Bulls expect him to get better as he has over the past few seasons. Much in the same way, Gordon is expected to continue as the leading scorer of the Chicago Bulls. It would come as no surprise if the third-year man out of Connecticut reaches the 20 points per game plateau.
Luol Deng is yet another talented young scorer at the small-forward position. Deng seems to be more comfortable coming off the bench, however, as he averaged almost three points more a game in that position then as a starter. The starter, therefore, is Andres Nocioni who can provide energy and double-digit points night in and night out.
The Bulls pride themselves on playing tough defense and having one of the deepest rosters in the league, and that should continue through the 2006/07 season. Some of their key bench players that haven’t been mentioned so far may include first-round draft pick Tyrus Thomas. Tyrus is a very young player who has a lot of talent but is relatively unpolished. Ben Wallace should help in his development as an elite NBA player. Another key bench player that coach Scott Skiles has relied on is backup point guard Chris Duhon. Duhon is a relatively unspectacular player who can manage the offense when Hinrich needs a break.
The Bulls certainly have a lot of talent entering the 2006 season, but most of that talent is also very young. This may end up being their downfall once again, as in the past two seasons. One thing is for sure, Chicago is on the right path to success.
The author is a well knowned sports betting editor at Sports Betting Basketball . Visit ASB to learn about basketball betting and get up to the minute odds/scores.