The Chicago Bulls have just been dealt a huge blow. Rajon Rondo has been ruled out indefinitely with a fractured thumb. This news could not have come at a worse time for the Bulls who were playing some of the best ball of the season. Despite this loss, the Chicago Bulls are still in a great position to upset the Celtics in the first round.
Yes, Rondo was running the offense like a maestro, but the Bulls can adjust. First, the team will look to start either Michael Carter-Williams or Jerian Grant. Based off the way that Grant ended the season, I expect the Bulls to choose him as the starter for Game 3.
Grant has done a good job this season at the point guard spot and provides better shooting for the team. He will (of course) not pass the ball as well as Rondo and does not rebound as well, but he will be serviceable.
Meanwhile, Carter-Williams is a very good defender. He, like Rondo, can’t shoot, but with his great size at the point guard position, could certainly bother the Celtics with his length.
Dwyane Wade will now play more with the ball in his hands. With Rondo, Wade played primarily off the ball and was not asked to do much play-making. Now, he will be forced to create more for his teammates and himself.
Jimmy Butler will be asked to do much of the same. He will not be able to play off the ball as much, but will still be required to score at a high rate. Not an easy task, but something he should be able to handle.
As for the future, I think if the Bulls can pull off this series, we will not have seen the last of Rondo. He has played hurt many times in his career, including a spectacular game as a Boston Celtic when he dislocated his elbow and still finished the game. Rondo is a tough guy and will do everything he can to be out there in the second round. Heck, he might even be available for a Game 7 if things go well.
It’s easy to panic if you’re a Bulls’ fan, but this team is still in great shape. They still have the best player on the floor. They still have a two-game lead. They’re back at the United Center. They have serviceable back-ups and they are still going to be out-rebounding the Celtics. Don’t lose faith, this team can still survive this injury.
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