Derrick Rose was MIA for the fourth consecutive game for the Chicago Bulls, but it didn’t stop them from beating the Boston Celtics 89-80, with Luol Deng and Carlos Boozer both leading them team scoring 23 points, while the overrated and too dependent on Rajon Rondo Boston Celtics just didn’t have enough to keep up with a better team.
The Bulls have lost only once in this recent Derrick Rose injury, this time his troublesome back. He has already missed nine games this season after missing a total of six during his first 3 seasons in the NBA. It’s a good thing the Bulls just might be the deepest team in the league.
The Celtics, at their current state, get too much respect from media folks, when the only one who should be really considered an All-Star level player is Rajon Rondo. Rondo has his superstar kind of nights once in a while, like a few nights ago with his triple double and the 95-91 win over the Chicago Bulls, but the Celtics need that kind of effort to beat better teams. Rondo, despite the hype, isn’t the kind of point guard to lead this team against title-caliber teams each night.
Deng keeps hovering around the border of overrated, underrated or evaluated just right. He finished with 23 points and 10 assists, as his passing skills suddenly shine with no Derrick Rose running the show. He had a big night from long range as well, finishing with 6-9 from the three. Deng is averaging 16.2 points while shooting 42.8% from long range this season.
Deng was only one of three Bulls players to finish the game with double doubles. Carlos Boozer scored 23 points and brought down 15 rebounds. Joakim Noah, averaging 16-12 in his last five games with 15 points and 16 rebounds. This was the first time two Bulls teammates finished with at least a 15-15 night since Charles Oakley and Dave Corzine in 1986.
As for the Celtics, this was their second straight loss as they still hover just above the .500 mark, ranking 7th in the Eastern conference. The over reliance on Rondo’s inconsistent shooting and their rebounding problems (52-37 for the Bulls, who also grabbed 16 offensive rebounds) eliminates them from potential contenders. They may have won the title in ’08 and reached the finals in ’10, but this old group has experience and not much else.
The Bulls, looking rather adjusted to life without Derrick Rose, are simply out of their league.