Sorting out fact from fiction during the last week of Bulls training camp

The talk out of camp and after four preseason games has all been positive. That’s nice on the ears for Bulls fans, but what can they truly latch on to and what is mere noise?

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Bulls coach Jim Boylen has promised a more up-tempo offense this season.

Michael Conroy/AP

A lot of self-assessment seems to be taking place at the Advocate Center these days.

With the start of the regular season about a week away, however, the question with the Bulls’ organization always seems to be the same: Is it sustainable?

Guard Zach LaVine claims he’s fully focused on defense.

Coach Jim Boylen plans to go from what was a crawl and a walk to a flat-out running style.

Kris Dunn has insisted on being a good teammate rather than focusing on a starting job and playing time.

Even general manager Gar Forman preached accountability this season, with the playoffs as the target for Year 3 of the rebuild.

But everyone has a plan ‘‘until they get punched in the face,’’ as Mike Tyson famously put it.

That first blow will be thrown next week in Charlotte. The Bulls are hoping to be the puncher rather than the recipient.

“We’re just a lot more together,’’ LaVine said of the team’s attitude with training camp in its last days. “I think we have our goals set this year, and that’s something to strive for. It’s something that we haven’t had. I don’t think we’ve had the opportunity the last couple of years because of injuries to set expectations. We have them set now. So I think we have something to work toward, and we’re all together.’’

That’s certainly a lot of positivity, but let’s try to separate fact from fiction.

1. The Zach Effect

Buy the hype with Zach LaVine. The ACL rehab is two years in the rearview mirror, and LaVine wants his name mentioned among the elite shooting guards in the league.

For the first time, he seems focused on making sure that happens. That means not only putting up 25 points a night — not an issue for LaVine — but also showing that he can be a two-way player. His lack of defense in the past has been a bit of a head-scratcher, especially because of how athletic he is, but he’s determined to change that perception.

LaVine wants to be at the forefront during All-Star Weekend in Chicago in February by any means necessary. Expect him to be there on that Saturday night, attempting to reclaim his Slam Dunk crown and taking on Zion Williamson along the way. But he also wants to participate Sunday in the big-boy game. Don’t count LaVine out on any of that. He’s on a mission.

Verdict: FACT — Now, if he can also figure out how to play with Lauri Markkanen ...

2. Run-and-gun

Jim Boylen always has been transparent about the way he has wanted his team to play.

That honesty angered many, but Boylen hasn’t apologized.

He has promised an up-tempo offense for this season. Just watch what has been going on in the preseason.

Verdict: FACT

3. Dunn and done

Kris Dunn has lost the starting point-guard spot to Tomas Satoransky even though it’s not official. Is Dunn happy about it? Absolutely not. But he’s being smarter about it and hasn’t complained publicly.

Dunn will be showcasing his talent and makeup for the rest of the league.

The Bulls have their feelings about him, and now it’s about making himself a more valuable trade commodity to everyone else.

Verdict: FACT

4. Accounta-Bull

The Bulls’ front office feeling more accountable? It sounds good, but no one’s buying it. Without consequences, the concept of accountability has no real heft.

Verdict: FICTION — Three out of four ain’t bad.

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