Bulls’ backcourt needs to be prepared to continue sharing the wealth
It has been a crowded situation since training camp started, but the point-guard duties will continue to be handled by committee, Bulls coach Jim Boylen said.
Tomas Satoransky was still the starter Saturday, and his status isn’t in jeopardy for the time being.
But the point-guard minutes after that first rotation are anybody’s guess, and coach Jim Boylen is fine with the myriad backcourt looks he has been unveiling through the first three games.
“Yeah, it’s a little bit of feel, it’s a little bit of gut, it’s what’s going on in the game,’’ Boylen said. “It’s matchups. There are a lot of things that go through your head in those situations. Sometimes it’s just eye contact with a guy. You see he’s locked in, he’s checked in, and you’re not going to take him out. We discuss those things. We discuss them before the game, and we discuss them in-game. ‘How are we doing?’ ‘Where are we at?’ ‘Who’s feeling good?’ ‘Where are we minutes-wise?’ Those things are kind of what we get paid to do.’’
And, Boylen said, it’s also what his players are paid to accept.
“I have established with this group of guys from September that whoever is in the game, we expect them to play,’’ Boylen said. “If you’re not in the game, then you’re expected to be ready to come in the game. It’s all hands on deck at every moment.’’
That acceptance has made Boylen’s life a lot easier.
In the season-opening loss in Charlotte on Wednesday, Boylen was able to get Satoransky and Kris Dunn almost the same amount of playing time, with each just over the 24-minute mark. Rookie Coby White also has earned minutes, but he mostly has played off the ball.
Then there’s Ryan Arcidiacono, who comes in when Boylen goes with a three-guard attack.
During the victory against the Grizzlies on Friday, Dunn played 26 minutes and Satoransky 22. Satoransky was struggling with his shot and also having trouble guarding rookie Ja Morant.
At the end of that game, White and Zach LaVine were carrying the scoring load, so Boylen was subbing Satoransky and Dunn in and out for offense and defense. It’s an ongoing game of musical guards.
“I mean, we all have one goal, and that’s to win,’’ White said. “If someone is hot or someone is playing well, then they’re staying out there. It all depends. But we all want to win. No one really cares when they come in or how they come in, how much time they get.’’
A day closer
Chandler Hutchison continued to work through his injured left hamstring, and Boylen implied that his return is imminent.
Considering that Otto Porter Jr. took a nasty elbow in the second quarter against the Raptors and had to leave the floor for a while, Hutchison will be welcomed back with open arms. The Bulls are thin at small forward, and Hutchison would be a big help.
“Hutch is a big wing; Hutch is what the league is,’’ Boylen said. “You know, 6-7, 6-8 guy who can guard multiple positions. He can handle the ball; he can get out and run. Our multiple-ballhandling system was put in with him in mind, him involved in it. We will not rush him back. He is closer than ever. He had a great workout, so we’ll keep doing the right thing with him.’’