Howdy folks! It’s been a little while since my last post, I’ve been battling some minor health issues. Life with a toddler seems to mean being in a constant state of having the sniffles. Let’s be honest, not a ton has happened for the Bulls in the last couple weeks. But this week is different! Monday was Media Day 2021 for the Chicago Bulls. The players showed up at the Advocate Center to take promotional pictures, cut promotional commercials, and give the media the first interviews of the season.
The big talking points of the day seemed to center on lowering fans expectations for the season. From the joint press conference of Arturas Karnisovas and Billy Donovan, to the individual pressers of Zach LaVine, Nikola Vucevic, DeMar DeRozan, Lonzo Ball, and Patrick Williams, the message was clear; Yes, this Bulls team is talented on paper, but they need to gel as a team first before they can fulfill all the wild hopes we fans have for this season.
Some things that really resonated with me from the press conferences:
Billy Donovan put a strong emphasis on the importance of defense. He challenged LaVine, Vucevic, and DeRozan to step up on that end of the court, and to really work hard on it all season long.
Zach LaVine wants to treat this season like the Bulls have championship aspirations. Not that they will seriously compete for a championship, but to approach their practices and games like they will. I thinks this is a natural shift in attitude and goals that comes with the talent upgrade from the offseason. Whether or not this roster ever wins a championship, they need to work toward one. This is no longer a rebuilding team. Making the playoffs is no longer the ultimate goal for this squad. The Bulls are on track to compete with the top teams in the league, LaVine wants the team to work to make that a reality.
My favorite interview of the day was Patrick Williams presser. It wasn’t really what he said, but more about how comfortable he was in answering questions. He was open, genuine, and confident in front of the media. He’s no longer a nervous rookie, and I’m hoping his confidence in the press conference translates to confidence on the court. We’re going to have to wait a little while to find out because…
BAD NEWS ALERT:
Patrick Williams suffered a “severe” ankle sprain a couple weeks ago while working out. He’s going to miss most, if not all, of the preseason, and maybe even a week or two of the regular season if the injury lingers.
I’m keeping this post kind of short this week while I get back into the swing of things. The Bulls started officially practicing yesterday, and their first preseason game is next Tuesday, October 5th, against the Cleveland Cavaliers. I am currently working on my positives for every player on the roster, I’m treating this project as sort of a preview for the season. I’ll be dropping those posts throughout the preseason. If I can stay healthy and find some time away from the toddler, I hope to get back to two posts a week, we’ll see how that goes. Until then, thanks for reading and GO BULLS!