About Last Night: Boozer Steals Show

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – Anyone that tuned in to Monday night’s Bulls-Thunder game in anticipation of an epic point guard battle between Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook went to sleep disappointed.

They both played decently, though neither of them played up to their own lofty standards. But they were a mere sidelight on this night to a bigger headliner. This time it was Bulls forward Carlos Boozer who stole the show.

Boozer, in just his fourth game of the season (delayed by a broken finger), went wild on the Thunder, piling up 29 points and 12 rebounds to power the Bulls to a 99-90 win.

The Bulls had to wait a month to see it in action, but they have to feel good about the immediate future with a healthy Boozer easing into his role alongside Rose and Joakim Noah.

For his part, Boozer told reporters he’s just doing what he’s always done. More from my main man K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune:

“I’m just playing,” Boozer said. “This is regular stuff for me. I’m getting better every day. I’m playing off D-Rose. He’s our guy. Teams are double- and triple-teaming him, so I’m just moving to open areas.

“I’m an aggressive offensive player. And defensively, I was better on pick-and-rolls and help side defense.”

Boozer indeed came out aggressive with eight first-quarter points. He also converted two circus shots for potential three-point plays in the third, but missed one free throw.

“He should make everyone’s game easier,” Derrick Rose said. “He and I can play pick-and-roll. Joakim (Noah) can be on the weak side, tipping in shots.”

Added coach Tom Thibodeau: “We want to be an inside-out team. You can see what Carlos brings. He’s such a threat in every aspect — from transition, to pick-and-roll, to catch-and-shoot. He runs the floor well.”

Boozer and the Bulls weren’t the only team to experience a breakthrough Monday night.

After two years of struggles against their Southeast Division rivals, the Hawks (minus an injured Joe Johnson) mustered up the goods to top the Magic in Orlando behind double double performances from both Josh Smith and Al Horford.

The Knicks and Heat continue their respective rises up the Eastern Conference standings by extending their win streaks to five games with wins over the Timberwolves and Bucks, respectively.

We’ve even got the video evidence for you here in the Daily Zap:

And LeBron James headlines the Top Plays from Monday night:

*** Don’t forget to join us for lunch today on The Jump at 1 p.m. on NBA.com where we will preview tonight’s Fan Night matchup between the Golden State Warriors and Dallas Mavericks ***

16 Comments

  1. Bede says:

    It’s appropriate time to make some plans for the future and it is time to be happy. I’ve read this post and if I could I desire to suggest you few interesting things or suggestions. Maybe you could write next articles referring to this article. I wish to read more things about it!

  2. hhhhhhh says:

    Being from Toronto, I have seen what Bosh brings everyday, from rebounding to high percentage shooting. I dare to say he has been the only consistent force to be ever in a raptors uniform. Now that he is playing as a member of the HEAT, I wish the best for him and hope he wins a championship which eventually he will. Their talent will overpower teams like Orlando, Boston may be not this year, and simply because Boston has a lot of big bodies to take advantage of inside play. The HEAT need a center like Andray Blatche and a point guard like Jose Calderon who is an excellent passer with the highest assist to turnover ratio in the league. And for all those who hate Lebron and Bosh for so called bailing out — I got two words for you —————– FREE AGENTS —————

    it is unfair to demand LEBRON and BOSH to play out of their respective positions. LEBRON is a small forward not a point guard granted that he is an unselfish distributor but it is not a comfortable role for him to take and as for BOSH he is an excellent power forward but it is unfair to ask him to guard the SHAQS or DWIGHTS or NOAHS of the league but he does a decent job on the glass as of late.

  3. LogicalNightmare says:

    THE NETS WILL NOT make the playoffs and neither will the raptors The Bulls are only getting better and better every year this year we will be above the .500 mark instead of right at it. The Bulls have a great chance to make deep in the playoffs this year the eatsern conference playoff will follow as: Boston, Orlando, Miami, Chicago, Atlanta, New york, Milwaukee and a toss between Cleveland and Toronto and maybe Charlotte

    • whoDAT says:

      nice list, although I think the Heat will take over Orlando by the playoffs and the Pacers deserve to wrestle with the other chumps for the basement

  4. hhhhhhh says:

    rebounding wins games and bulls are the best rebounding team now that booz is back. Watch out!!

  5. I hope the bulls make the playoffs this year. It would be great for the city of Chicago.

  6. TP says:

    Boozer have to be better defensively and I think he can because Tom Thibodeau is a great coach.

    L.A. Lakers for life !

  7. Kyle Goodman says:

    To me the Eastern conference can be cut into like four categories…

    1. The Celtics and Magic are the contenders, with the Celtics being favored sixty forty over the Magic to represent the East in the Finals
    2. The Heat and Bulls are just below, likely to be in the conference finals but be on the losing end
    3. The Knicks, Hawks, and maybe the Pacers are at playoff contention level but probably won’t make it out of the first or second round
    4. The Nets, Cavs, and maybe the Raptors are teams that could make the playoffs but will have to fight for it
    5. Everyone else doesn’t make it

    • Good Sir says:

      Actually, Kyle, I would have to say that you must include the Bucks in group 3, or at least group 4. They have had numerous injuries and are currently in a slump. Once they break out of it, they easily in the playoffs.

  8. Jao Romero says:

    lol. no one cares about the Bulls or the Thunder. You can bet if this was an article about the Heat, comments would be pouring in.

    I’d be more interested if Boozer improves defensively with Thibodeau as his coach.

  9. 90210 says:

    wtf!?!?!?!?!? it says Bulls-Hornets game. then is says an epic point guard battle between Derrick Rose and Russell Westbrook? when did Westbrook went to the Hornets? hahahaha

    • Donk says:

      Maybe you should refrain from commenting on typographical errors if you’re going to write something as ESL as “when did Westbrook went to the Hornets?” And you definitely shouldn’t follow that with a hahahaha. Baka.
      fyi, it should be, “When did Westbrook GO to the Hornets?” And no, you shouldn’t write go in all capital letters, it was just for emphasis.

  10. Arty says:

    If I’m not mistaken, you meant to say Bulls-Thunder instead of Bulls-Hornets, right?

    It’s all good Sekou, you can’t be perfect all the time. I liked the “breakaway” theme though.

  11. Zzanzabar says:

    Both Boozer and Stoudemire must be ecstatic being in the Eastern Conference and playing a schedule heavy with mid-level and bottom feeder teams. Both have a real chance at making the playoffs (more so Boozer because the Bulls are a good team) with teams that only have to break even or so (.500 record) to make it into the playoffs. At first I didn’t believe that Stoudemire could make a 20 win difference with the Knicks (it still might be a stretch) but if this keeps up they might actually make it to the playoffs.