With lonzo ball and Caruso at both ends of the court, bulls turbulence is being tested

2022-07-26 0 By

If the Chicago Bulls have been one of the hottest teams in the NBA since the start of the season, the Windy City has been one of the worst lately.With just three wins in their last 10 games, the Bulls have fallen out of first place in the Eastern Conference, and they probably won’t get better soon.Lonzo Ball was diagnosed with a bone fracture on Jan. 20 and is expected to be out six to eight weeks before returning.A few days later, Alex Caruso, who had been reinstated from the health and safety list, was ruled out for at least two months after a foul by Grayson Allen.The most obvious effect of the absence of the two main guards will be on the defensive end.The Bulls’ defense ranked 107th in the league until mid-December, but between Dec. 15 and February, Chicago’s defensive rating dropped all the way to 114th, 22nd in the league.In fact, the Bulls’ defense doesn’t feel like it’s at the top of its game in terms of lineup structure, but when Lonzo Ball and Caruso are on the court, the effect is very good.Statistically speaking, when Caruso is on the floor, the team’s defensive efficiency rises to the top of the league when the team has played at least 300 minutes.Lonzo Ball isn’t far behind, either, as the Bulls’ defensive rating drops to 110 when he leaves the court, but increases to 107 when he returns.However, statistics alone don’t fully capture how important these two guards are to the Bulls’ defensive system.Billy Donovan used a lot of zone defense this season, and since there is no big center that can be the defensive center of the lineup, using zone defense to prioritize opponents is the right type of defense for the current system.This is not to say that Nikola Vucevic is not a good defender, in fact Vucevic is even the most exhausting player in the zone. In addition to being the “Rover” in a 3-2 zone, Vucevic sometimes has to be responsible for sinking and preventing opponents from slipping into the penalty area.It’s a lot easier when he has Caruso or Lonzo ball on his team, because both of them can almost always step in the opponent’s path on their first shot against the ball handler, and they also work from the side to make it difficult for the ball handler to penetrate the paint.From the start of the season through mid-December, the Bulls were attacked from beyond the three-point line about 37 percent of the time, but after that the team’s attempts began to decline, replaced by more paint damage.It certainly reflects what happens when the Bulls don’t have a first-line defender.And that’s just the defense. the bulls’ offense, on which they prided themselves, actually suffered the most.It given originally Bauer or caruso, is is an important rotation between starter and substitute player, so maybe cause was not in the rotation of players must be forced to make up, but because the players themselves not as big as the previous two, threatened and subsequent have substitute problem again, so will lead to the bulls starter and substitute faults occur frequently in fire.That also put a heavy burden on the team, with DeMar DeRozan’s effective and true field goal percentage dropping from 52 percent and 59 percent.Especially these days, derozan and Vucevic are responsible for the team’s offensive burden, although both are still very dangerous in the middle range and low post.But relatively clear unilateral, the weak side may not be as insurance, if at the same time hit two offensive efficiency decline situation, will become the main cause of the bulls attack failure.Of course, the good news is that during this period, rookie guard Ayo Dosunmu officially entered the rotation through the injury period of the seniors, and can bring positive help to the team through good offensive judgment, as well as quality chasing defense skills.But that means another soldier is missing from an already stretched staff for the latter half of the rotation, and Derrick Jones Jr. broke a finger that will require six to eight weeks of rest.And more or less explains why Tyler Cook, who led a two-way contract, ended up in the starting lineup.Bulls this period of low state of the cause, the most important or affected by injuries.Even if the original attack and defense framework can temporarily support, but a long time and after the players have fallen, certainly on the windy city will cause no small harm.It’s reasonable to assume that the Bulls will be a pre-playoff team, but it’s pretty pessimistic at this point that the current injury wave will affect their season.But if the front office, led by Arturas Karnisovas, is hoping to become a champions-level team in the next year or two, will they use Jones and Coby White or Patrick Williams as inducers this season?Getting a player that can help them get through their recent struggles and take them to another level in the playoffs is a pretty intriguing proposition.