Fans of the Chicago Bulls, along with fans of any NBA team that isn’t the Cavaliers are officially on notice. The Kevin Love to Cleveland trade is official and I’m officially worried.
The new big three in Cleveland of LeBron James, Kevin Love, and Kyrie Irving is better than the big three in Miami ever was. Love and Irving have as much or more talent than Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh and are both much younger.
The 2014-2015 season will be Love’s 7th NBA season and Irving’s 4th. When LeBron joined the Heat, Wade and Bosh were both entering their 8th NBA season. LeBron has a lot of work to do to make the Cavaliers a great team but the good news is, because the core of the team is so young, he has plenty of time.
Even though Love is only 25, he plays with the intelligence and experience of someone who’s been in the NBA for 15 years. I’m not sure how long a player has to be in the league to be considered a veteran but in my mind, Love should be considered one. He definitely plays like one.
Sometimes the youth of players can be seen as a disadvantage but Irving plays well beyond his years. With the leadership of LeBron, Irving and the Cavs will go from worst in the NBA to possibly the best team in the league.
Bulls vs. Heat games are essentially irrelevant and now I can’t wait for Bulls vs. Cavs night. Good news is, we don’t have to wait long to see it. The first Bulls vs. Cavaliers game will be Friday, October 31st. This is the first home game of the season for the Bulls and the United Center will be hopping.
The Bulls recently released their schedule and I circled a few games that will be very intriguing. The first game of the season is in New York against Carmelo Anthony and the Knicks.
I’m hoping the Bulls make Carmelo Anthony sorry he decided to re-sign in New York. I know, I just sound resentful because he didn’t sign with the Bulls. I don’t really think it will require the Bulls beating the Knicks to make Carmelo regret re-signing. I think the average outcome of the New York Knicks regular season will do the trick just fine.
November 13th, the Bulls will travel across the border to face off against the Toronto Raptors. Any team versus the Raptors has traditionally been a snoozefest but the Raptors were one of the top teams in the eastern conference last year. They were unfortunately eliminated in seven games by the ancient Brooklyn Nets. The Nets won’t be a threat this year and it will be good to see how much trouble, if any, the Raptors will be in the playoffs.
November 15th, the Bulls will be hosting the Indiana Pacers. This will be a good test for the Bulls to see how they stack up against the Pacers without Paul George. My guess; they stack up well.
November features a lot of interesting matchups for the Bulls including an arduous seven game road trip to wrap up the month. By the time December rolls around, NBA fans will really start to see the type of team the Bulls are going to be this season.
Derrick Rose and Team USA will soon be headed to Spain to begin the FIBA World Cup of Basketball. Team USA has played two exhibition games and has won both by a combined 69 points. They show no signs of slowing down and are all set to play their final exhibition game before they play their first game of the world cup on Tuesday against Slovenia.
There was an air of nervousness among Bulls fans earlier this week when Rose sat out of Team USA practice because of knee soreness. The tension only heightened when he ended up being a late scratch and didn’t play at all against The Dominican Republic.
When videos of Rose playing with Team USA first surfaced this summer, the entire sports media world seemed impressed. He looked like the old Derrick Rose and that is a good thing, not only for Bulls fans but for the NBA as a whole.
As video kept coming out of him playing extremely fast, intense, and aggressive, I started to get a little worried. Yes, it is great to see him playing well at full speed but he has to take it easy or he’s going to re-injure himself before his body is once again fully adjusted to full-contact basketball.
I hoped Mike Krzyzewski would take it easy on Derrick and give him a rest. I was a bit concerned at first hearing Rose sat out a game because of knee soreness but it seems it was just exactly what I was hoping for; a precautionary measure by coach Krzyzewski to ensure Rose remains healthy.
Knee soreness is common for anyone coming off two major knee injuries in the last few years and Rose is working through the pain and becoming stronger all the time. He proved that on Friday when he played with Team USA in New York against Puerto Rico. Rose came off the bench, scored 6 points and had 4 assists in 13 minutes.
“Yeah, just knocking the rust off,” Rose told ESPN Chicago. “I haven’t played in the offseason at all, so this allows me to get in a little groove. Especially being a point guard, you always gotta get used to the ball again. Especially getting used to the international balls because they’re a little bit lighter and a little bit more slippery and really get my pace and my wind back. My wind is the last thing I need.”
67 days until the Bulls’ season begins. Derrick Rose sounds ready. Are you?